The Surrealism Website
Jo Joosten (1956 - )
Jo Joosten was born in Maasbracht in the Netherlands. He began drawing while still a child and after high school he took a course at Nijmegen from 1976-1982 to become a teacher of art. Later in his career he became head of an advertising agency and worked as a graphic designer. In 2000 he decided to give up his profession and work full time as an artist, as he realized the limitations that his work as a designer was imposing on his creativity.
From 2006 he had several solo exhibitions and also participated in group exhibitions.
He wrote about his work:
"Here I am, condemned to my own imagination and stuck with the responsibility to give meaning to my paintings. Of course I, as a painter, do not want to steer the spectator too much and instead I want leave it as open as possible to many different interpretations. Anyone can recognize shapes from his emotions, moods and feelings and put his own imagination to work. Themes such as fertility, growth and death are common in my work and there are often references to human anatomy and fertility. I am fascinated by the relationship between the erotic aspect and death. Wonder about life and death is one of the key elements in my work. Often there are parallels with human reproduction: the encompassing nature of the uterus, but also fantastic and unexpected scenarios in a world characterized by alienation. The scenes are symbolic, absurd, sometimes humorous, and they reflect the fragile beauty of the power of yesteryear. I paint in a realistic style and while that is very closely approached, my paintings are only realistic in detail, but not as a whole."