Animal hijinks and playful puns fill the colorful prints of County Down-based artist Jo, also known as Strangford. Whippets in knits, bagel-scarfing badgers, and roly-poly felines are just a few of the characters that emerge from lino-cuts and Risographs. “The main surface I’m carving into is flooring lino—it comes in bigger pieces than artist lino—and plywood, though I’m a beginner at wood carving,” she tells Colossal. “I work from home. I’ve basically taken over the whole house now.”
With a background in ecology, Strangford discovered printmaking when she joined local Extinction Rebellion groups, decentralized initiatives designed to persuade governments to act on the climate emergency. “I had previously done a bit of digital work but fell in love with the process of carving and printing,” she says. During the pandemic, her work took on a more humorous and light-hearted quality. “When the world got more serious, my work became more playful.”
A solo exhibition of Strangford’s work opens tomorrow at The Workshop Ballynahinch and continues for two months. A selection of prints are available in the shop on her website, and you can follow updates on Instagram.
Do stories and artists like this matter to you? Become a Colossal Member today and support independent arts publishing for as little as $5 per month. You’ll connect with a community of like-minded readers who are passionate about contemporary art, read articles and newsletters ad-free, sustain our interview series, get discounts and early access to our limited-edition print releases, and much more. Join now!