← Back to Artists

Jo McDonald

Jo McDonald
  • Work
  • Biography
Collective memory...Structure...The Written Word...

From an early age, I have been fascinated by books and story-telling. I remember the excitement of a weekly treat, of choosing a book from our local booksellers. For me, reading was a great comfort. I ventured into a world of escapism, where I had a certain amount of control over the adventure.

I have extensively experimented with traditional tapestry weaving techniques using paper as an alternative medium to the customary wools and threads. I use second-hand books and printed matter, and their built-in history is the attraction for me. The objects already contain traces of the past - fingerprints, skin, dedications, scribbled notes - which offer us a glimpse into their earlier life.

I de-construct the books, cutting them by hand, and make them into new structures, which still contain their original history, but which now have a new visual form.

The discovery of how a material can be manipulated - the qualities and possibilities of the paper itself - excites me.

I am intrigued by the memories particular texts hold for us. When stories are told, and continue to be retold through generations, they are not forgotten. They become the memory of who we were.
Jo lives and works in Edinburgh, and has been experimenting with paper for over 20 years.

E-mail: jo_mcd@hotmail.com
Website: www.jomcdonald.co.uk
Instagram @jomcdonaldart

2001-2003 Edinburgh College of Art, Scotland: MFA Tapestry
1996-2000 Edinburgh College of Art, Scotland: BA(Hons) Tapestry-1st Class

2015 Nomination for Grand Prize, Amateras Annual Mini Paper Art Exhibition , Sofia, Bulgaria
2015 Short-listed for Cordis Trust Prize for Woven Tapestry, Edinburgh, Scotland
2014 Nomination for Grand Prize, Amateras Annual Mini Paper Art Exhibition, Sofia, Bulgaria
2013 Creative Scotland Award for Talent Development/ Professional Development
2013 Hope Scott Trust Award
2013 Award for Innovation, Amateras Annual Mini Paper Art Exhibition, Sofia, Bulgaria
2012 Milly and Benno Schotz Award for best work submitted by a young sculptor, Royal Glasgow Institute, Glasgow, Scotland
2012 Certificate for Versatility, Amateras Annual Mini Paper Art Exhibition, Sofia, Bulgaria
2000 Commendation for Simon Jersey Ltd Tapestry Award, London
2000 Helen A Rose Bequest Award for distinguished work, Edinburgh, Scotland
1998 2nd Prize in 1st International Flag Biennial, Szombathelyi, Keptar, Hungary

Apex Temple Court Hotel, London
Amateras Foundation, Bulgaria
University of Aberdeen, Scotland
Gallery of Szombathelyi, Hungary
Dallas and Dallas Business Interiors, Glasgow
Private collections in UK, France, USA and South Africa

Sessional tutor within Edinburgh Adult Education Programme, various venues
Workshop tutor, various venues throughout UK

Council member of Society of Scottish Artists
Professional member of Society of Scottish Artists
Professional member of Visual Arts Scotland
Member of The Royal Glasgow Institute of the Fine Arts
Member of Star* (Scottish Tapestry Artists Re-grouped)