Embracing change through a white empty cube.
When I stepped into the studio of artist Jo Hummel, I noticed there were no bookshelves for tired objects or keepsakes. This is on purpose, so the space conserves its freshness and is able to welcome variation. Here, she uses the material of paper to both recreate and organise chaos on the floor, often listening to special electronic music with her headphones, in a process that the artist describes as removing choice and anxiety. The collected forms that occupy the floor space appear to gather in segmented patterns, revealing human’s desire for organisation in disorder. Scraps of paintings are piled in corners, acting as remnants from past, conscious and unconscious artistic decisions which almost mirror the sea’s natural process of scattering debris that it no longer wishes to carry. Located in a boat unit in the Isle of Wight, it hardly feels that I’ve left the shores that adorn the mainland, as beachy tones and deep-sea hues feed into the shifting shapes that work their way up the walls. Even the artist herself wears an outfit that is made up of earthy browns, rooting herself as well as her practice in the landscape that surrounds her. The artist further reveals to me that not only the natural backdrop but also the knowledge gained from each day informs the pieces she makes. Noticing precarious paper cubes and a child’s toy of bricks, I investigate the studio further to realise these hold vital information for when the artist loses her thread.