About Jo van Kampen
Jo has been a professional Fine Artist for the last 25 years, She lives in beautiful Barnard Castle, a pretty rural town in Teesdale.
Private commissions have always been the mainstay of her work, Jo creates art which captures the detail and soul in each piece, as well as painting a beautiful work of art. Inspired by Archibald Thorburn as a child, her style is fresh yet her pieces have an ‘old master’ look to them. Some have been likened to the style of Cecil Aldin.
Her private commissioned work is hung all over the world and she has a running waiting list of a few months all the time.
She has a number of limited edition prints for sale by the leading country publisher Sally Mitchell Fine Arts.
Jo was honoured to be headhunted by The British Kennel Club in 2008 to produce a large contract of around 255 separate colour illustrations, of all the current registered breeds of dog. It took 2 years to produce! These were showcased for the first time at the 2008 Crufts dog show . They can be seen in the ‘Discover Dogs’ publications and used exclusively from now for all British KC purposes, and for their extensive website on the breed pages. She is currently awaiting confirmation from the Australian National Kennel Council to do the same thing.
Jo’s other love is the beautiful natural countryside in Teesdale, and the flora and fauna which live within it. This eye for detail and colour is captured enchantingly in the silk floral art Jo produces. A totally unique art form Jo invented for herself whilst being inspired riding her horses and walking her dogs through the lanes and fields, this captures as realistically as possible the delicateness of flower petals, leaves, grasses, and even tiny moths and other little creatures, using torn ribbons of white silk which she then hand dyes individually and sews into hessian. Every flower is absolutely botanically accurate, enhanced by single strands of silk thread and tiny beads.
Another element of her work involves illustrations for recognised dog breed Standards. These are in pen and ink. The key to this type of work is not only the artistic talent needed to produce ’arty’ images, but the accuracy and understanding of the anatomy and structure. These typically contain up to 50 mono colour illustrations for publication, depicting the correct points and common faults of the particular breed.
Another achievement is her first illustrated book published by HarperCollins publishers, on dog behaviour written by Sarah Whitehead, called ‘Clever Dog‘, Jo produced 56 illustrations on a very tight schedule!
In her spare time Jo devotes most of it to her 5 horses, and enjoys barrel racing on Charity, her adored 23 year old mare who has won league barrels championships! Also baby Rose, who was a surprise foal! Jo has three dogs also, who have a lovely life living in the Teesdale countryside.
Jo loves doing her art, her lifetime study of her work is obvious in every single piece, which are truly beautiful. In almost 2 and a half decades she has never had a single unhappy customer! Jo will be sitting up into the early hours for a long time yet, painting under the light of her lamp.