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Introducing JO-ANN FARNELL

What is your background and how does that inform your art?

I was raised on a farm and spent my working life in horticulture producing beautiful gerberas and table grapes, so nature/life has always inspired me and working outside "the norm". My artistic aspirations were sparked when I joined "Group 55" mentored by Mary Hayward, a London trained professional artist.

What type of art do you create and what motivates you to make it?

My work features found objects, mixed media, sculpture and abstract. I enjoy creating innovative works presenting the natural beauty of what is around us. Life stories are intertwined with my work. My "Heritage Series" one of which is in the Wallace Collection features pure white bones -vestiges of life - mounted on original farm posts, honours our forebears. I'm motivated to get people thinking about the interaction with consumerism and nature.

Favourite or most inspirational place?

The Mahurangi area, with space, beaches and our Studio 22 where four artists meet weekly to explore and create art. The interaction inspires me to look at different ways to present what is around us.

"Man needs music, literature and painting - all those oases of perfection that make up art - to compensate for the rudeness and materialism of life" Fernando Botero.