Photo: Jonathan Polkest in Penzance, South West

Jonathan Polkest

Artist, Technician, Lecturer / academic, Community worker


I make installations, two-dimensional artworks and I create objects. I also paint, construct, fabricate and finish, sometimes work is gallery based sometimes community based in the public realm. I have been commissioned to create artworks and produce scenographic objects and scenic art. I experiment with different media and approaches both digital and analogue.

My artwork and practice evolved from a fascination with Drawing at an early stage, influenced to a certain extent by the art emerging from St. Ives prior to attending art school in Cornwall and later a mode of articulating ideas for craft and work in Design for Theatre and Performance, especially the collaborative crafts that arise in such situations. Drawing continues to form the instigatory element of my practice embracing diverse ranges of process acquired through related developments, these include photographic techniques, painting, textiles, paper-cutting and sculptural projects, design for performance. These are not selected to purposely enlarge the range of such criteria but actually a curiosity for materials and crafts, their ritual inclusion and capability to solve problems - express solutions.                                         

Theatre Set Design:

The Draw Me/ Tedna Ve portraiture installation: This installation for portraiture is a feature of my work that I continue to exhibit and operate in community art based situations, in schools, galleries and art centers. 

A large part of my practice is connected with teaching, research, residency and support in educational or work-shop situations, I appreciate the stimulus of dialogue that creative exchange generates. Drawing is often presented as a primary activity because of its lack of technical parameters, in its most advanced form drawing can be anything and as a tool or an attitude it is most effective.

 Collections Jack Larson Collection, New York, USA Bolitho Estate Collection, Cornwall, UK 

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Location Penzance, South West
Activities Higher education, Workshops, Community arts, Public art, Technical installation
Artforms / type of project Drawing, Installation, Painting, Performance, Textiles

News & Events

  • The Big Draw in the Museum of the Mind : Jonathan Polkest

    30/10/2015 – 31/10/2015
    Bethlem Museum of the Mind Bethlem Royal Hospital Monks Orchard Road Beckenham Kent BR3 3BX - 020 3228 4227

    Drawing portraits with the aid of a camera obscura : In the age of the Selfie when portraits and cameras are common practice come to the museum and draw a portrait and exhibit. Every portrait counts!

    Find out more

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