Joanna Holland’s first solo exhibition, ‘Out of the Blue: Landscapes of Chronic Illness’ launches today in Gallery 2. The show shares her lived experience of chronic illness as it brings together photographs, video, soundscapes and text from different bodies of work created over the last three years.
Collectively these works contemplate what it is to live ‘a life disrupted’, offering an insight into autoimmunity. Joanna lives with, amongst other conditions, a rare blood vessel disorder and ankylosing spondylitis. In this exhibition she invites audiences to view her lived experience through the lens of a specific encounter:
“Several years ago, I suddenly lost all my colour vision – apart from the colour blue. A blue so vivid that it hurt to look at it. I didn’t know at the time, but I was experiencing cyanopsia (everything tinted with blue) and photophobia (extreme light sensitivity). A possible rare side effect of immunosuppressant medication. My vision returned but this experience has had a profound effect on my practice.” – Joanna Holland
The artworks in this exhibition share very real experiences of diagnosis, medication, side effects, chronic fatigue, hospitalisation, and the impact of [in]visible disability on family life. They also explore an interconnectedness with nature, and the complex entanglements between self, planetary health, climate change and biodiversity loss.
“Sometimes the beauty is in the shadows and the horror in the everyday.” – Joanna Holland
’Out of the Blue’ was supported by Arts Council England and will be touring to originalprojects in Great Yarmouth (21 October – 17 December) where Joanna will be collaborating with artists Caroline Cardus, Genevieve Rudd and Dolly Sen. Selected works will also be featured on Wysing Arts’ digital platform ‘Wysing Broadcasts’ later this year.
To learn more about the exhibition visit our webpage and visit the exhibition in Gallery 2 from 28 July to 8 October 2023. Our exhibitions are always free for all, open 12pm – 5pm on weekdays and 12pm – 4pm on weekends.