Mankind has depended on plants since the dawn of time. An exhibition grown out of a residency with the University of Essex’s Department of Biological Sciences, Jevan Watkins Jones investigates our interrelationship with plants.
In the University’s plant laboratories, research focuses on how to provide sustainable food and fuel for a growing global population. Current research investigates ways to improve the water efficiency of plants. In response to time spent in the labs witnessing man and machine working in close proximity, Jevan turns Art Exchange into both laboratory and garden as he explores the necessary coexistence between plant, machine and mankind.
Watkins Jones’ fascination with plants …also ventures beyond the laboratory, as he takes inspiration from John Constable, addressing the colour green, gardens as artifice and the shifting English landscape. By repositioning vegetal material alongside common and personal histories, Jevan highlights our perennial occupation and interaction with plants. This extraordinary new body of work includes large-scale drawing, objects and film, alongside plants taken directly from the University’s laboratories and greenhouses.
Jevan Watkins Jones studied at the Prince’s Drawing School in London and recently was Associate Artist at firstsite, Colchester. Since 2012, he has been artist in residence at Art Exchange
Photos: Douglas Atfield
Jevan Watkins Jones is an Alumnus of Princes Drawing School, London, where he received the Drawing Year first prize for his work from city farms. He is also the founder of The Children’s Art Farm Foundation. http://childrensartfarmfoundation.tumblr.com/.