"Inspiration for my recent work comes primarily from Nature and in particular butterflies and moths and the folklore and mythology surrounding these insects, to produce work with a narrative quality. I like the school of thought that butterflies represent the soul and also parallels drawn between their life cycle and that of the life, death and resurrection of Christ. I tend to work in series and as well as interpreting butterfly myth and folklore, I draw inspiration from classical music, in particular the Papillons piece by Robert Schumann which attempts to capture their movement and flight, and Puccini's Madam Butterfly. Nocturnes by various classical composers also, I feel, capture the spirit and characteristics of the moth perfectly. I am also inspired by the Victorian obsession of collecting, preserving and presenting insects in boxes.
"My butterflies are created from collaged paper. I really enjoy the process of collage, layering and texturing various elements from disparate sources and combining these to create a cohesive whole. I use imagery taken from advertising as well as the rhythm and patterns of found imagery and wrapping papers which I then cut up to create a newly ordered image. As well as their natural beauty I agree with the Eastern belief of butterflies as bringers of joy and being the essence of happiness."
Joseph studied at Liverpool Art School and St Martins School of Art, London.
After leaving Liverpool Art School with a degree in Graphic Design, Joseph continued his education at St Martins School of Art. He has since worked as a freelance illustrator creating artwork for a variety of clients, which include the BBC, London Buses, The Times and The Guardian newspapers and Varig airlines. Joseph has recently completed a range of appointments teaching fine art, graphics, illustration and textiles and now extends his own artistic practice by exhibiting his artwork internationally.