Juliette Losq popped onto our radar a couple of years ago when she exhibited in the RA’s summer show, so when her name appeared on our Facebook page to be featured on Art Wednesday, we thought we’d better get in touch. The Essex-born 34-year-old London-based artist creates hauntingly beautiful, large-scale photographic-esque paintings. Blending print-making and etching techniques, her artwork depicts overgrown, neglected landscapes that are inspired by the writers Iain Sinclair and Peter Ackroyd, as well as Victorian prints, rococo compositions and daguerreotypes, to horror and science fiction films. She integrates all these elements into her own documentation of dilapidated landscapes, playing with notions of the interior and bringing the outside in – note the Victorian fire places in the photos below. It’s all very clever stuff.

Juliette studied English and History of Art at Cambridge, then did an MA in Eighteenth Century British and French Art at the Courtauld Institute.  She worked in the City for a few years, before she came to her senses and returned to study Fine Art at Wimbledon College of Art (BA Hons 2007), followed by a PG Dip at the Royal Academy Schools (2010), phew that’s a lot of education. But the hours of hard graft and of course her art skills paid off and she won the prestigious Jerwood Drawing Prize in 2005. Although she was encouraged to study academic subjects (you don’t say!), her father was an art teacher – the obvious inspiration behind her path into art. She studied her art A-level at home under his watchful eye and continued to make work and exhibit during her degree at Cambridge.

Recently Juliette’s been focussing on the ‘anthropology of ‘The Clearing’. Sounds a bit ambiguous doesn’t it? So we’ll let her explain: ‘[it's] a place where we feel simultaneously safe and yet vulnerable: stray too close to the edge and the forest may snatch you into its depths.  This translates to marginal and abandoned landscapes and interiors, which may evoke the point at which the forest encroaches upon civilization.  Generally shunned by city-dwellers, they are inhabited by creatures that render them marginal in the minds of all but ‘outsiders’ and ensure that they tend to be associated with the more animalistic aspects of human behaviour.  They are marked as the territory of children by graffiti tags and the creation of dens, or used as places to urinate or copulate.  In popular culture they become ‘symbolic recesses’ where monsters may hide.’

For Juliette’s website [click here]

Wunderkammer 2009, ink on paper 260 x 560 cm and oil on cabinet 187.5 x 74 x 44 cm

Wunderkammer, detail

Wunderkammer, detail

Scumsucker, 2011, ink on paper, 123cm x 153cm

To An Unknown God, 2012, ink on paper, 56cm x 76cm

Oraculum, 2012, ink on paper, 123cm x 153cm

Polydorus,2012, ink on paper and oil on cabinet, 250cm x 400cm (dimensions variable)

Polydorus, detail

Polydorus, detail

Polydorus, detail

Polydorus, detail

The Ploutonion, 2012, ink on paper and ink on fire surround, 250cm x 600cm (dimensions variable)

The Ploutonion, 2012, ink on paper and ink on fire surround, 250cm x 600cm (dimensions variable)

The Ploutonion, 2012, ink on paper and ink on fire surround, 250cm x 600cm (dimensions variable)

The Ploutonion, detail