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JO BRADFORD | ’Portals’
January 20th 2022
Collecting vintage colour charts, textile cut-offs, books on colour, colour chips and charts, Jo Bradford has devoted two decades in search of the hues she believes have been ‘left the shadows’; minor colours of the spectrum, or those that sit in-between the primary ones of the rainbow. From the black void of the artist’s darkroom, the works emerge, painted by the choreographed exposure to light sources. A methodical and meticulous process. Following the works Autogenesis and Continuum, the series of four Portals explore a more figurative subject as the door to her darkroom opens and the light from outside flows in.
by Henrik Riis
PRINT EDITION RELEASE
The lights go off and as she is plunged into complete darkness Bradford begins her work. Committed to her memory are a series of complicated and precise actions and numbers required to create her unique camera-less photographs. Each step in Bradford’s process must be exact in order for her final print to be perfect. If she forgets part of the sequence, loses concentration, or if she doesn’t move her covering masks with real precision, then she must start it all over again. It is the beginning of a long and challenging process to produce Bradford’s unique ‘luminograms’.

Contrary to the void of the darkroom, the rest of the artist’s first-floor studio is all about the natural light cascading through the large north-facing windows inviting in the hillsides of Dartmoor. Beyond, the inhabitants of the stunning national park in Devon, a south-western part of England, take little notice of what goes on inside the house on the hill. A house that once was part of several barracks housing personnel of the British army. Out there - on the other side of the glazing - there is a rhythm to it all. When the wind comes in strong from the West, the wild ponies and the sheep move closer to the house to seek shelter - and when relieved by the sun, they again retire little by little to the hillsides. It is a spectacular daily scenery which showcases the natural world and the slowly changing colours from daybreak to night-time. The perfect location for an artist obsessed with colour.

With a sizeable library on colour theory, optics, art, and design - colour and light is constantly on the artist’s mind. So much so that she eliminates references to figuration in the work in order to focus on her central interest and fascination with colour, and its endless combinations.
JO BRADFORD
Portals Chartreuse, 2018

Edition of 20
48(w) x 60(h) cm
18.90(w) x 23.62(h) inches
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JO BRADFORD
Portals Chartreuse, 2018

Edition of 20
48(w) x 60(h) cm
18.90(w) x 23.62(h) inches
ENQUIRY
Art is about speaking to each other and by making an enquiry you can have direct conversation with us about artwork you find interesting.
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Jo Bradford (South African)
48(w) x 60(h) cm
18.90(w) x 23.62(h) inches
C-type Lambda print from photogram on Fuji Crystal Archive Pearl paper.

Signed, titled and numbered on label on verso.

/ Excluding framing as shown /
Print mounted on aluminum and raised 5mm from board. Framed in white-dust 3/8" width aluminium frame. Cost for framing: £690 / $795 / €680.
Edition of 20
PRICE (INCL. VAT)
$ 585.00
MAKE AN OFFER
Find art trends here >
It is perhaps ironic then, that the artist’s camera-less photographic prints are created in total darkness. Enclosed within her darkroom, Bradford must work in a black void, unable to allow any excess light from the outside world to penetrate her studio, and ruin the print process. She may work blindly, but does so with accuracy and precision, knowing exactly where her tools and materials are, and what her next step should be. Viewers can appreciate the beautiful results of Bradford’s work and perhaps an even greater appreciation can be had when understanding the extensive thought and technique that lies behind them.

Before Bradford can start the manual process of a new work, she has carefully thought-out and planned her objectives for the print she is creating. Having considered the exact colour and gradients she wants to create, and carefully hand-cutting her masks that will cover and uncover areas of the paper for exposure, she also keeps thorough notes and sketches to inform exactly how she wishes the resulting print to be - all of which must then be meticulously committed to memory. No light source - however faint - is permitted in the room.

Stepping into the darkroom she forgets the outside world, focusing the mind, and concentrating only on a long sequence of actions and numbers that will take her through the exposure timings and filter settings for each gradient she wishes to reveal. It is a mentally exhausting and impressive process that Bradford has developed through years of research and experimentation. Even still, it can take between 5 and 30 attempts with each one taking over an hour to produce, to get just one luminogram exactly right.
JO BRADFORD
Portals Teal, 2018

Edition of 20
48(w) x 60(h) cm
18.90(w) x 23.62(h) inches
MAKE AN OFFER
Art is about talking with each other and via ‘Make an Offer’ you can have a direct conversation with us and suggest a price for this artwork.
Your Offer *
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JO BRADFORD
Portals Teal, 2018

Edition of 20
48(w) x 60(h) cm
18.90(w) x 23.62(h) inches
ENQUIRY
Art is about speaking to each other and by making an enquiry you can have direct conversation with us about artwork you find interesting.
Name *
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Jo Bradford (South African)

Portals Teal , 2018

48(w) x 60(h) cm
18.90(w) x 23.62(h) inches
C-type Lambda print from photogram on Fuji Crystal Archive Pearl paper.

Signed, titled and numbered on label on verso.

/ Excluding framing as shown /
Print mounted on aluminum and raised 5mm from board. Framed in white-dust 3/8" width aluminium frame. Cost for framing: £690 / $795 / €680.
Edition of 20
PRICE (INCL. VAT)
$ 585.00
MAKE AN OFFER
Find art trends here >
In the series titled Portals, Bradford presents colour as both her medium and subject and each of the four works, Carmine, Chartreuse, Orange and Teal is based on a unique colour allowing space for a portal to appear in the image by merging it with a gradually tinted version of itself. As in her previous works she is able to successfully create such subtle changes in gradient, that the shift from one hue to another are at an almost invisible level; where one colour starts and another ends is impossible to tell.

Notably, the four Portals represents a slight departure from her previously pure abstract series, as the works contain a subtle reference to something literal as indicated in the titles. The seemingly abstract rectangles in these works suddenly have a reference to the figurative - which Bradford describes as doorways - coming simply from the first experience of light as she returns to the real world outside of the darkroom; rectangular lines and shapes mimicking the light and shade found in a room illuminated by a doorway to a bright lit space.
JO BRADFORD
Portals Orange, 2019

Edition of 20
48(w) x 60(h) cm
18.90(w) x 23.62(h) inches
MAKE AN OFFER
Art is about talking with each other and via ‘Make an Offer’ you can have a direct conversation with us and suggest a price for this artwork.
Your Offer *
Name *
Email *
Phone number *
Any Comment? *
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JO BRADFORD
Portals Orange, 2019

Edition of 20
48(w) x 60(h) cm
18.90(w) x 23.62(h) inches
ENQUIRY
Art is about speaking to each other and by making an enquiry you can have direct conversation with us about artwork you find interesting.
Name *
Email *
Phone number *
Any Comment? *
* Required fields
Jo Bradford (South African)
48(w) x 60(h) cm
18.90(w) x 23.62(h) inches
C-type Lambda print from photogram on Fuji Crystal Archive Pearl paper.

Signed, titled and numbered on label on verso.

/ Excluding framing as shown /
Print mounted on aluminum and raised 5mm from board. Framed in white-dust 3/8" width aluminium frame. Cost for framing: £690 / $795 / €680.
Edition of 20
PRICE (INCL. VAT)
$ 585.00
MAKE AN OFFER
Find art trends here >
Once understanding the complexity of Bradford’s technical process, the viewer can only imagine the sensations that must wash over the artist each time she lifts herself out of her state of concentration in the darkroom, opening the door into the light of the world outside, and revealing the brilliant hues of the finished prints. Portals not only mark a subtle departure from purely non-figurative art, but also reveals how the artist’s personal experience of printmaking has strengthened her practice, giving viewers a unique glimpse into her world.

From a newly renovated studio, Carmine, Chartreuse, Orange and Teal were created by Bradford over a twelve-month period, beginning in early 2018. Each of the editions of 20 are Chromogenic lambda prints from photograms on Pearl paper, presenting them a shimmery pearly surface. The prints are signed, titled and numbered on label on verso.

You can find the series of Portals and view them in more details on Jo Bradford’s artist page here.
JO BRADFORD
Portals Carmine, 2018

Edition of 20
48(w) x 60(h) cm
18.90(w) x 23.62(h) inches
MAKE AN OFFER
Art is about talking with each other and via ‘Make an Offer’ you can have a direct conversation with us and suggest a price for this artwork.
Your Offer *
Name *
Email *
Phone number *
Any Comment? *
* Required fields
JO BRADFORD
Portals Carmine, 2018

Edition of 20
48(w) x 60(h) cm
18.90(w) x 23.62(h) inches
ENQUIRY
Art is about speaking to each other and by making an enquiry you can have direct conversation with us about artwork you find interesting.
Name *
Email *
Phone number *
Any Comment? *
* Required fields
Jo Bradford (South African)
48(w) x 60(h) cm
18.90(w) x 23.62(h) inches
C-type Lambda print from photogram on Fuji Crystal Archive Pearl paper.

Signed, titled and numbered on label on verso.

/ Excluding framing as shown /
Print mounted on aluminum and raised 5mm from board. Framed in white-dust 3/8" width aluminium frame. Cost for framing: £690 / $795 / €680.
Edition of 20
PRICE (INCL. VAT)
$ 585.00
MAKE AN OFFER
Find art trends here >
 
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