Katherine Jones’ prints have a hand-crafted beauty which she achieves by using traditional printmaking techniques such as collagraphy, where textured materials are attached to a cardboard or metal base which is then inked and printed through an etching press onto paper. Katherine first started working in this way while at college because it was cheap and simple, but after seeing the results and introducing etching and block-printing into the process, she realised the potential of going back to basics and has continued to work in this way throughout her professional career.
There are parallels to be drawn between Katherine’s chosen printing technique and the subjects she explores in her work, one being the reoccurring appearance of the house, which, as one of the first motifs we draw as a child, sees the artist bringing things back to the beginning. The symbol of the house conjures up references to home, stability, shelter and protection, and forms the basis of many of Katherine’s most recent works. A solid starting point for Katherine, it evolves during the printing process, which eventually takes control, and she likes the idea of this, rather than trying to hold on to pre-conceived ideas about how a finished piece should look.
The houses that appear in these works tend not to look like a regular home, but instead hollow structures that appear like large green houses radiating a strong, glowing artificial light. Inspired by Victorian glasshouses, such as London's short-lived Crystal Palace, as well as recent events that have seen homes lost due to coastal erosion in the UK, Katherine’s houses often appear abandoned and away from the rest of the landscape, either elevated above the horizon, submerged in water or floating off the edge of the cliff like a ghostly illusion. By placing the houses in this way, she counterbalances the initial sense of protection and security experienced on first association with that of suffocation, claustrophobia and suppression, giving the works a sinister edge that suggests imbalance, unease and a fear of isolation.
'Tear', ‘The Lip' and ‘The Belly Pot' were inspired by an extract from the film ‘A Potter’s World’, which shows British, Hong Kong-born potter Bernard Leach describe the objects he makes as living things with human characteristics such as honesty, strength and charm and quoting an old Chinese sage. So moved by the footage, Katherine made a series of works that celebrated Leach’s theories, featuring pot-like forms in Chinese ‘Han’ blue, with their given titles relating to both the shape of said structures but most importantly to living beings.
Katherine studied printmaking at Cambridge School of Art and at Camberwell College of Art, London. She has won and been selected for multiple printmaking prizes in the UK including finalist for the prestigious ArtsFellowship Foundation Awards 2013, and was commissioned to make The Usual Things collagraph and block-print on paper for Printfest 2013 in Cumbria. Recent exhibitions have included The Royal Academy Summer Exhibition, London (2008, 2010, 2012, 2013); Bainbridge Open, Embassy Tea Gallery, London (2013); London Art Book Fair with Kaleid Editions, Whitechapel Gallery, London (2012); 6th International Printmaking Biennial of Douro, Portugal (2012); Prints Tokyo 2012, Japan Print Association, Tokyo Metropolitan Museum, Tokyo, Japan (2012); Cologne Paper Art 2012, Germany (2012) and the 8th British International Mini Print Exhibition, London Print Studio (2009, 2012). A number of her works are held in the V&A Collection.