mutter matter wishbone

Jane Fox

Jane graduated in visual art and sound from Brighton Polytechnic in 1985. Since then she has developed an arts practice that embraces a wide range of mixed media (drawing, print, moving image and installation) with inter-connected activities including artist led projects, collaborations and solo work for exhibition. This has led her through self-taught musicianship, fish slapping festivals, celebratory cake making, midnight processions, experiments with salt and crushed coal, non-sense hymns, drawing from memory, night walks in a Finnish forest and more.

Jane was in the Marine Girls (1980-1983), Carnival Collective (1995-2005) and along with Maria Tribe, founded Armadilloh! Arts. In 2003 Fox spent a year in Cornwall developing her work on the Contemporary Visual Art M.A. at Falmouth College of Art. She has exhibited widely in the South East, South West and France and from 1989-2009 worked out of Maze Studios in Brighton.

Jane is a member of Inkspot Press and Phoenix, Brighton and is a Senior Lecturer on Perfomance and Visual Art (B.A. Hons) and M.A. Inclusive Arts Practice at the University of Brighton. Originally training as a youth worker, Fox is an experienced arts facilitator and currently works alongside the Rocket Artists in Brighton.

She also collaborates periodically with fellow artist Tony Gammidge as Fox&Gammidge.

Irene Mensah (1963-2013)

A graduate in textile design, Irene Mensah’s practice is fine art based and incorporates drawings, projection, poetic text and performance, using domestic fabrics as part of the ‘scenery’ for explorations of memory and heritage. She is a founder member and co-manager of an artist’s studio, where she exhibits regularly as well as in other venues. Other recent work includes performance of own poetry at Brighton literary events and 2 sell out performances with a new theatre piece, ‘Snake and Ladders’.

Collaborative exploration as a member of the Brighton Black History Artists Group has a focus on the significance of food, with an emphasis on the unexpected as well as the seductive. She will be a contributor to a forthcoming anthology as a member of a Black and Mixed Heritage women’s’ collective WriteMeetRead.

As a community arts practitioner, Irene Mensah has an extremely varied background in leading and coordinating art projects. Currently a visiting part time lecturer in Community Arts Practice at the University of Brighton, past projects range from co-production of educational learning resources, leading reminiscence projects, youth arts trainer and work in schools.
Irene Mensah died suddenly in April 2013 – Tribute here

The Mutter Matter project allowed the artists to engage in a deep and celebratory process both as artists and as friends, and to travel together through a challenging and life enhancing terrain. From the details of risk assessment to the fabulous mayhem of working with flour, always journeying with brave hearts as both companion and witness to each other’s stories.

Artist Books

The collaborative nature of Mutter Matter required the artists to find and tread a path together whilst making room for their own histories and memories as they moved towards the finished works.

Joint book-works were produced to house these deeply personal reflections as the artists journeyed through the work. Irene would start at one end of the book, and Jane at the other, meeting in the middle with collaborative texts.

The book that you see here is from the first installation and could be viewed as part of the installation at the Regency Town House, Brighton.