I first came across the work of Joanna Charlotte in Do South, where her prints of silver birches and magnolias are big sellers. Then, by chance, I bumped into her while having a nose around the Gipsy Hill Workshops during the Overground Festival back in August. Joanna's style is very exacting, finely detailed and polished, but for years she struggled to find the right direction, both in terms of style, and in her career.
After failing to find a college course that suited her, Joanna actually gave up her dream of being an artist, but found artistic expression designing interiors when she got into property developing. After completing a couple of development projects locally, she got her fingers 'burnt', and staring hardship in the face, she decided it would be better to be poor doing what she loved. So, in 2004 she picked up her paintbrushes again. Where before she had struggled with acrylics, she now discovered a love for oil paints. Her first commission came from her sister, who had just bought a new flat. The large empty wall in the living room was crying out for some art. By her own admission, her style was a lot less polished back then, and she has spent the intervening years honing and developing her talents. Her influences range from Stubbs, clearly evident in some of her beautiful equine portraits, to Klimt, to traditional Japanese art. Her birds, butterflies and flowers, while stunningly real, are often set within striking abstract backgrounds of gold leaf. Her former career working with interiors has also had a significant influence. Her paintings are as much interior pieces, as they are works of art.
Since moving her studio from home, to the workshop off Westow Street, where she is surrounded by other artists and makers, her career and confidence have leapt forward, with her work now exhibited on a regular basis.
In addition to her beautiful paintings of flora and fauna, Joanna is regularly commissioned to paint portraits, not only of people, but pets too!
Joanna is represented by Four Walls.
Forthcoming exhibitions include Hampstead Affordable Art Fair & The Coltbridge Gallery.
Gipsy Hill Workshops will be having an Open Studios event on October 28-29th.