Jo Dennis | Matter out of Place

Sid Motion Gallery is delighted to present a solo exhibition by the British artist Jo Dennis.
The exhibition merges new paintings, photography, sculpture and installation.



Dennis’ practice explores people and place by documenting worn and well-used spaces. Through photographing dilapidated walls, Dennis focuses on the aesthetic of the layered, textured surfaces and through her painting and installation she suggests the urban renewal of city spaces. By doing so she explores our emotional connection to places of shared memory, and the atmosphere created by this hidden and revealed history.

Degradation and the covering, renewal and redecorating of place are themes key to Dennis’ work. She explores these themes in her physical approach to painting, by applying the medium in loose gestural strokes in a way to cover up and renew or to guide the eye around the imagery.

The images of the walls become ‘found’ abstract paintings – in turn, the works become a record of the time that has eroded these surfaces and reveal the domestic, un-fantastic banality of everyday existence. For Dennis there is a poetic profundity to this erosion. Her composition and cropping of photographs, allied to her paintings and sculpture, together expand these ideas using a process of abstracting and reframing imagery.

Jo Dennis will speak in conversation with art historian and curator, specialising in photography and the moving image, Rodrigo Orrantia and Sid Motion on Wednesday 8th February, at 7pm.

Listen to the talk here:

‘If we can abstract pathogenicity and hygiene from our notion of dirt, we are left with the old definition of dirt as matter out of place.’

Dame Mary Douglas
Purity and Danger: An Analysis of the Concepts of Pollution and Taboo (1966)


Jo Dennis (b 1973, UK) graduated from a BA in Fine Art and Contemporary Critical Theory from Goldsmiths College, London in 2002. Recent exhibitions include Cropped Up, at AMP Gallery, UK; Acca Atelier, at Galfa 20, Italy; Working from Home, AMP Gallery for Artlicks Weekend, UK, and a solo booth at The Others Art Fair, Truman Brewery, UK. Dennis’ work has been included extensively in group exhibitions including at the ICA and The Royal Academy of Arts, in London.  Dennis lives and works in London, and continues to exhibit internationally.

19 January – 24 February 2017
Private view: Tuesday 17 January 2017, 6pm – 9pm
Opening Hours: Thursday – Saturday, 12 – 6pm