Joanna Dixon wanted to be an artist from the age of five but her father told her it was not a suitable career for a young lady. Determined all the same, she secretly applied to the Hammersmith College of Art, being one of the few colleges that had retained its life drawing school in an era when abstract expressionism was endemic across the London art school scene. Her career progressed with numerous exhibitions and awards, being elected a South West Academician in 2005 and Member of the Society of Women Artists in 2009. She is listed in David Buckman’s “Dictionary of Artists in Britain since 1945”. Today she is primarily a figurative artist. This event at Zari Gallery is her first London exhibition featuring her Indian travels.
An Indian Journey is a collection of paintings from recent visits to India. Many of these journeys were with her husband, a GP, and a number of other doctors. Their objective was to learn about various forms of complementary medicine and for them to transfer the practice of treatments, such as yoga and Ayurvedic medicine, into their local settings, in UK. These expeditions were part of a wider vision, supported and encouraged by HRH The Prince of Wales, that orthodox and complementary medicine should become integrated. Some of these expeditions were organised by Dr. Mosaref Ali in Delhi and North India. Others were hosted by Dr. Issac Mathai in Southern India, where he introduced Jo to the Ragi threshers, and Mr Puttu Chittiappa, who arranged visits to Coorg and Ooty, to visit the tea and coffee plantations. Travelling with these friends enabled Jo to have an intimacy with the local people and surroundings that would not have been possible otherwise.
The characters in Jo’s paintings reveal a dignity and depth of spirituality which appears biblical in nature - not surprising perhaps as many of the villages have remained virtually unchanged for centuries. The artist uncovers a society that retains an intrinsic beauty which is dignified and mystical.
We warmly invite you to visit Zari Gallery to experience An Indian Journey.