Jo Hummel’s work is characterized by a painted and collaged paper surface in which she employs spontaneous variations of space, color and form.
Although his pictorial collages have a physical and material character, the context is deliberately anthropological and Hummel’s works are inspired by human habits and behavior, with a special interest in determinism and free will, as well as formal concerns.
Hummel conducts experiments in which the process often determines the outcome and provides a safe setting for improvisation, a place where rational procedures can coexist with intuition. In this way, he explores the unpredictable nature of intuition and spontaneity, and his practice functions as a simulation of decision-making experiences that allow him to capture and utilize sensations such as anxiety or serenity. And it is through these contradictory emotional states of comfort, satisfaction, anxiety, repulsion, etc., that Hummel is able to tap into the state of human uncertainty that is felt everywhere. The social structures in which we operate guide and interfere with how we feel and what we choose to do on a daily basis. Social class, religion, gender and ethnicity influence what we consider pleasant or unpleasant.
The nature of collage is that throughout its creation the work is constantly changing. The artist must negotiate the canvas by rearranging, choosing and adjusting, often over long periods and having explored hundreds, even thousands of the infinite possible outcomes. In this way, the creative process itself is as important as the end result.
Jo Hummel at work in her Isle of Wight studio.