Thursday, 29 April 2010


At John Jones, a shared love of art is apparent in everything we do. This can also be seen through the wide range of talented artists that work throughout the company.

We were excited to learn that our Photography Consultant Kevin Smith’s work is being shown as part of Dawnbreakers, an exhibition exploring the impact of the new millennium. Although the topic of the millennium has been addressed many times before, Dawnbreakers presents a fresh approach, focussing upon themes surrounding the transition into the Information Age and in doing so subtly mirroring the artistic trends that surrounded the turn of the nineteenth century.

Bringing together contemporary artists from a range of disciplines including photography, print making and painting, the exhibition will run display at the John Hansard Gallery in Southampton until 19th June 2010. Admission is free. For more information click here.

Image courtesy of John Hansard Gallery

Friday, 23 April 2010

Full Throttle - Frames by John Jones

Last night a private view was held for Full Throttle the second part of a retrospective showcasing the work of legendary photography Bob Carlos Clarke. The Little Black Gallery in Chelsea is hosting the exhibition, framed by John Jones, which features a selection of pictures from Bob’s 30 year career.

Bob Carlos Clarke’s work has attracted much controversy over the years and this exhibition is no exception. Within days of it going on display the police received anonymous complaints about the images on display, particularly Whip Girl (shown above, at the Luciano Restaurant, London) and Tite Street.

After a visit from the police the gallery to move this piece, so it could not been seen from the street. Although the police officer was careful to state that this was not the place to have a debate about “art versus pornography”, the topic has been picked up on by the press who are asking the inevitable questions about this kind of censorship, in a society where sexual imagery is increasingly prevalent.

With many theatres now offering film style advisory ratings for their plays, is there a pressure on art galleries to follow suit? Of course, these debates are nothing new, art has always caused controversy and controversy will always spark interest. Bob Carlos Clarke’s work has become highly collectable and this is reflected in the sales of the pieces currently on display.

With the dispute continuing, the gallery has so far made the decision not to move Tite Street and has seen greatly increased numbers of attendees at the exhibition.

Full Throttle will run until 5th June, entry is free.
For more information click here.

Monday, 12 April 2010

John Jones Artist in Residence Mariana Heilmann

Thankfully to Kate and Lizzie, I had a second month as resident artist at John Jones. The residency has now finished, and I moved out of the studio last Monday.

For two months I worked at the very core of the workshops at John Jones. Walking to and from my studio I had the privilege of witnessing the entire process of frame making; from where the raw wood arrives to where the frames are glazed, sealed and wrapped for delivery and everything in-between.

The myriad of sounds, smells and sights was an inspiration and a lesson each day; the planing, blade cutting, the forming, the sanding, the cutting, the joining, the spraying, the sanding again, the gessoing, the painting, the gilding, the polishing, the soldering, the fixing, the sticking, the bonding, the mounting, the stretching and so on.

Because of the very busy frame making schedule I did not dare to disturb and ask too many questions, but there were wonderful people who, at coffee breaks visited me, brought me materials, and told me about their particular expertise. The interaction with them was fundamental to the work I was able to carry out, for without them, I would have not had the materials that they brought to my attention and keenly collected for me, nor the wonderful coffee break chats.

What a wealth of great and talented people, all highly skilled both in their specialty, and some as artists as well! Tabs' beautiful painted insects and Finoula's stunning drawings are fresh in my mind.

The extra month allowed me to, not only complete 3 commissions, but also gave me the opportunity to investigate the possibilities of the many materials that members of the team at JJ brought to my attention. At first I made small "sketches" with each material. I had, polishing wheels, blades, sanding wheels, acrylic and aluminum cut offs, sand paper, cutting mats, crinoline paper, welding rods and more. All these materials had either been used, or were a bi product of making another. Some of the investigations have remained just sketches for now and others I concluded and framed myself in Perspex boxes.

Though I did the mounting myself, I think that just being surrounded by the world of framing, opened in me an awareness of placement within a given space. Much of the time spent on each piece was spent making the decisions on proportion and layout to enable the work to read the way I intended it.

For anyone interested in seeing what I did during some of my residency, a collection of 9 finished pieces are hanging in the Collection Space for the month of April. I see these as first steps in my investigations, and have plans to make larger scale versions of a few of those displayed.
In conjunction with what is exhibited, I also produced 12 small pieces that are spring boards for potential future ideas. Unfortunately I was not able to exhibit these studio works as one was made of blades and too dangerous!

It has been a great residency. Apart from the abundance of interesting materials to explore and having a great space in which to work, I think I have probably learned more than I realise. The accumulated exposure to the goings on at the workshops and the interaction with everyone at John Jones will, I am sure, contribute in big and small ways to the next steps I will take.

For anyone interested in keeping abreast of what I am doing, please feel free to email me;

Friday, 9 April 2010

Art Plus Music Party

The Whitechapel Gallery will hold its annual Art Plus Music Party on 22nd April. As part of its ongoing collaboration with the gallery, John Jones have been involved, framing the works for the charity auction, which will feature artists such as Varda Caivano, Bridget Riley and Thomas Ruff.

Alongside the auction, the evening will include a wide range of music, art and installation, to raise money for the gallery’s Education and Community Programme. Music will be supplied by The Broken Hearts, Jefferson Hack, Dan Lywood, Justin Robertson, Matthew Stone, The Voguettes, Wild Cat Will and Nathan Gregory Wilkins.

If this wasn’t enough, The Whitechapel Gallery has also set up a series of specially commissioned performances involving collaboration between well known musicians and artists. The lineup will feature names such as Bishi and Oscar Sol, Primal Scream's Bobby Gillespie, Barrie Cadogan and Darrin Mooney with The Kills' Jamie Hince and Katy England with Julie Verhoeven; Dominique Gonzalez-Foerster, Ari Benjamin Meyers and Jack PeƱate.

If you’d like to find out more, book tickets, or take part in the auction please click here.

Tuesday, 6 April 2010

John Jones Cameo in New Art Film

Boogie Woogie is a comedy set in the contemporary London art world. Director Duncan Ward presents an all start cast including Christopher Lee, Amanda Seyfried, Gillian Anderson, Danny Huston, Heather Graham, Alan Cumming, and Joanna Lumley. Based on Danny Moynihan’s novel of the same name, Boogie Woogie casts a wickedly satirical eye over the darker side of the London art scene.

Exploring themes of debauchery and morality, the story centres around the discovery of a priceless work of art and the extreme lengths to which some of the contemporary art world’s major players will go to, to get their hands on it. Look out for a cameo from John Jones Ltd. Let us know if you spot us!

Boogie Woogie is due for general release on 16th April.

Thursday, 1 April 2010

Call for Entries

Converse/Dazed 2010 Emerging Artist Award

In collaboration with Converse, Dazed Digital has opened the entry process for its 2010 Emerging Artist Award.

All UK based or British artists under 35 are eligible, the only conditions being that you are not involved in study (university or art school) and are not represented by a gallery. Entrants can submit up to five images of their artwork and any type of art is accepted from painting and sculpture to video, performance and sound entries.
Five artists will be shortlisted and the winner will receive a £6,000 cash prize. All shortlisted artists will be awarded £1,000 and have the opportunity to display their work the Stephen Friedman Gallery, alongside the winner, throughout July and August of 2010.
The judging panel which consists of art insiders such as Sadie Coles, Francesca Gavin and Tim Marlow will select the shortlist based on what they consider to be the best, most innovative, interesting, well produced and strongest work.
The deadline for submissions is 1st May 2010, for full details click here.