Joanna Kinnersly-Taylor

"screen printing suits the way I think"

What do you make?

I’m a printed textile artist and designer and set up my first studio in 1989. My practice embraces often large-scale, site-specific commissions for both public and private interiors, one-off pieces for galleries, and linens for people to use at home.

What’s involved?

I screen-print (mostly) onto dyed linen and wool, building up a design through layers. I “carve out” my imagery through the push and pull of removing and adding colour, creating positive and negative space. My practice is multi-faceted, which keeps me open to new ideas. Through experience, I’ve got more technically confident and developed a more fluid approach.

What motivates you?

I’ve always loved cloth and transforming its surface, particularly on a large scale. When I discovered screen-printing, everything fitted into place. The layering process suits the way I think, and for me is the best way of making ideas tangible. Everyday moments and objects are my inspiration. My work is the only way I am able to process how life unravels. Without it I would feel very lost.

How did you train?

I studied Printed Textiles at WSCAD, Farnham (now University College of the Creative Arts). The course was quite technical, and that’s been extremely valuable. Moving to Glasgow, doing an MA and re-establishing my studio here was a big positive move. The greatest challenge in being a textile screen-printer is the space and equipment required – it’s expensive!

Tell us about your studio/workshop.

I rent a large space in the ‘WASPS’ artists’ studio complex in Glasgow. It’s a 1930’s former cigarette factory and I have really high ceilings and north light. I put in water and have gradually built up all the equipment I need to be self-sufficient – that’s really important for me. I work alone, but I like to hear the background noise of other people in the building – we all need to know we are not alone.

Ambitions?

To expand my product range, and to continue with site-specific projects and more ambitious gallery work.

Advice?

Look at everything as an opportunity. Remember that no experience is wasted, even a bad one. It may be hard, but have faith and never give up.