Associate Studio Programme 5 : Jonathan Baldock

We welcomed artist Jonathan Baldock around a candle-lit table, where we shared some grapes and a cup of tea. Within the first minutes of him being here, we were already laughing to tears. Jonathan’s humour and sharpness made the evening extremely light and informative.
We started the discussion around the state of art school, and the increasing amount of conversations around diversity and inclusivity since Baldock graduated. This lead us to speculate how the way we produce art and organise ourselves as artists was headed in the coming year. Artists nowadays seem to focus more and more on a specific audience, refusing the ideas of a unique definition of what art should be and embracing plural aesthetics.
He then told us about how the discourse around his work has evolved from his studies to today. Back at university, he started using fabric and sewing to create artworks, which was rare at the time, prompting feedback which uniquely questioned his use of materials and techniques. This was quite frustrating to him and he developed over the years the appropriate language to talk about his artworks in the way he wanted them to be understood. He sees the multiples ways his artworks can be interpreted as a strength but is more interested in telling stories rather than commenting on craft. 
After discussing the learning curve of making work as an artist in London, and balancing the demands for self-promotion as well the making of work itself, we showed Jonathan some work-in-progress. Jonathan offered us frank and witty feedback, focusing on how the aesthetic choices we made in our works were consistent with our intentions. Hannah Doucet.

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