Juliette Losq United Kingdom
I make detailed paintings, drawings and installations depicting marginal areas. I use traditional methods and materials in a unique way, building my work up in a layered practice that refers to both etching and primitive photography. I am based in London. I m a former recipient of the Jerwood Drawing Prize and was shortlisted for the John Moores Prize in 2014, winning the Visitors Choice.
I make detailed ink and watercolour paintings and installations. Through their complexity and depth I aim to challenge the notion of watercolour as being a medium that, traditionally, holds connotations of portability, and which is to be used for preparatory sketching. Using resist, a traditional material of the water-colourist, I work over the surface repetitively, creating multiple painted layers that simultaneously obscure and reveal those beneath in a process that references the building up of an etching plate.
I depict marginal landscapes that spring up in the overlooked borderlands of cities and towns. These become sites of speculation on what might have gone before and what may be occurring out of sight. Drawing on the idea that we project imagined histories onto these spaces, I sometimes make reference to imagery derived from various sources, including Victorian newspaper illustrations, paper toys and ephemera. These are collaged together with my own documentation of these neglected byways to form composite scenes, which then become layered images. Found images and stylised forms may infiltrate the composition, so that the eye moves between these and a realistically rendered landscape, and is confronted both by the excess of nature and the excesses of these forms.
I allude to the Picturesque and the Gothic of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, interweaving their motifs and devices with the marginal areas that I depict. I aim to evoke an uncertain world hovering at the edges of a symbolic ‘Clearing’, where wilderness and chaos oppose civilization and order, and in which beauty and neglect are interchangeable.