Jo Spence

The Final Project

Iconic British artist Jo Spence’s last body of work, The Final Project, explores the acute sense of unreality the artist felt about the possibility of death and non-being after her diagnosis with leukaemia in 1991.

Unable to use treatments from her previous battle with breast cancer, Spence confronted the distinct contrast between her physical appearance and mental state by looking for more indirect and allegorical methods of exploring her condition.

Returning to previously explored territories of magical realism and motifs from other cultures, she created a hybrid body of work she entitled PhotoFantasy. These images used a mixture of allegorical props alongside a photo-montage effect, resulting in a visual language quite different from Spence’s previous works.

This publication presents a compilation of this work alongside unpublished writings and notes by the artist as well as texts by Terry Dennett, Clarissa Jacob, Philomena Epps and Amy Tobin.

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