Jo Ashby

Jo Ashby comes from a family of painters. She trained at the Ruskin School of Drawing and Fine Art, Oxford University, and Goldsmith’s College, London. As a child and young artist, she had spent time in Devon and Cornwall, where her mother had lived and worked for several years, so the sea and coastline have always been powerful influences in her work. More recently it has been the coast of West Cork that has captivated her. Spending time living and working in her studio on Sherkin Island means that the sea is omnipresent and dominates her daily life. It would be too simplistic to say that she reproduces what she sees before her – it is more that Jo tries to capture a sense of the sea and its many moods.

Jo has spent time working in education, but she never lost her determination to return once more to professional painting. She has since gained a growing reputation for her carefully crafted works. Jo tends to work in series, exploring an image repeatedly over a period of time. Drawing is an important activity for her, which is evident in the exploration of rhythm and form, yet she also manages to create a powerful and distinctive atmosphere in each work. Jo can also become consumed by very specific projects, away from the ocean, such as her recent series based on the ruins and dry stone walls scattered across Sherkin. These developed from a series of drawings made on- site several years ago, but they continued to call to her.

Jo has exhibited widely in England and Ireland, winning commendations and awards. Her work is represented in private and public collections across Europe.