Jess Linton is a socially engaged visual artist and creative practitioner, who continues to create work alongside her art therapy practice. Her current art work largely draws on the borrowed image to playfully explore the world and its many guises, including the solace found in a fantasy place. Jess collects (some might say hoard) old magazines and papers, fabrics, family photos, postcards from women in Scarborough she's never even met. Jess considers the potential space that play, imagination and creativity offers; examining that which we might relate to and that which we might find strange, conflicting, less familiar. Jess’s work often draws on irony and humour in relation to mainstream messaging and misrepresentation of our intricate socio- cultural, political and personal realities.
Minutes after the first devastating earthquake in Nepal, Jess witnessed children turning to play, seeking refuge in their own creative spaces; rebuilding ‘home’ – a place to dwell, be nurtured and supported. Jess observes displaced communities in Calais drawing on the arts as an embedded act of survival; sharing cultural traditions or connecting through contemporary digital media; reclaiming some sense of freedom, voice, and identity; attempting to make sense amidst turbulent times. In working with people who have experienced physical, or emotional, displacement, finding a place to belong; a home "not only the place but the cluster of feelings [and identities] that are associated with it" (Papadopulos, 2002) is a recurring theme in her artwork.