About Joanne

Artist inspired by journeys over land, sea & through time.

I live in Dunnet, on Dunnet Head, Caithness, Scotland, only 2 miles from where I grew up in the village of Brough.  My artwork takes inspiration from our heritage.  As both participant and instigator of arts and heritage projects and collaborations I have worked in Taiwan, South Korea, Iceland, USA, Canada, Estonia, and also exhibited in Japan, Germany, Spain, Australia, Sweden and Finland. 

My artwork is varied, and is as much at home in museums as art galleries.

2019 -  I'm excited to have been invited back to Inverewe Botanic Gardens, a National Trust for Scotland Property, as artist-in-residence throughout  2019.  This will be a collaborative residency, working with other invited artists who work in a variety of disciplines.

My current self-directed projects take inspiration from lichens and also house dresses / wrap aprons.  Project blog:  https://thehousedress.blogspot.com/

I have been invited twice to Iceland, and been selected twice as artist-in-residence for Newfoundland and Labrador Crafts Council in Newfoundland where I was also and invited as key-note speaker for their 
conference  ‘Using Crafts to Tell a Story’ in collaboration with the Intangible Cultural Heritage department of the Memorial University of Newfoundland, St. John’s.

Keen to learn traditional skills, research local stories, learn about conservation and care of objects, I enjoy finding inventive ways to attract new audiences while adding new information to artefacts of which little is known.  By invitation, I give a presentation about my work for the Botanical Society for Scotland at the Royal Botanical Gardens Edinburgh and exhibit in their John Hope Gateway Gallery. 

I solved the mystery of how Angus MacPhee made his grass garments. Angus was a crofter from Uist who spent almost 50 years in a Highland psychiatric hospital. During this time he chose not to speak - instead he wove a series of incredible costumes out of grass. My full size replicas are now part of the
 Art Extraordinary Trust collection along with Angus’s original grass garment, all now held in Glasgow Museums. I was subsequently invited as one of the speakers for the symposium ‘Scottish Woven 
Communities’, an international gathering of knowledge, in the department of Social Anthropology at the University of St Andrews as part of research by Dr Stephanie Bunn. 

I collaborated for a number of years with Lynn Taylor, a printmaker in New Zealand.  We arranged  our exhibitions to open simultaneously in New Zealand and Scotland.  A self-directed project inspired by the maiden voyage of the Westland ship in 1879 from Scotland to New Zealand,  we have never met. 

Invited to work in Catalonia as part of a fibre festival, organised by Museu de la Pauma in 
Mas de Barberans. I worked in collaboration with international basket makers and artists to make a series of outdoor artworks from local plant fibre inspired by rock art from the area which depicts 69 figures. 

Invited by Chrysalis Arts I was lead artist in a two year, slow art, community artist residency project in Swaledale North Yorkshire. The residency exhibition started its tour at the Dales Countryside Museum in Hawes, North Yorkshire in October 2018.

I organised art based fundraisers for local heritage groups run by volunteers.   
 In 2014 - we raised £4532.88 for Brough Bay Association  and  Castletown Heritage Society 
In 2009  paper boats arrived from 25 different countries and we raised £1340 for Mary Anns Cottage .