Joy Laville, Isle of Wight, England, b. 1923
Although Joy Laville’s parents discouraged her artistic ambitions, she took independent art courses while finishing high school and briefly attending a small business school. Her education was cut short when World War II broke out, however she continued to pursue her passion.
The simplicity of Laville’s work is deceptive. She struggles to reduce her artwork to its essence, searching for an image that will “read” like poetry. The ocean remains for Laville a symbol of the unknown. “One might never guess that Laville’s serene images are generated by disquiet; only careful contemplation of the image delivers the emotion they hold within. She imbues each personage, still life, landscape or interior with a form of temperance that conveys tension and also keeps them interesting and gives them presence.” – Salomon Grimberg
In 2004, a retrospective exhibition at the Museo de Arte Moderno, curated by Santiago Espinosa de los Monteros, brought together works from more than four decades and represented Laville’s unique and continuing contribution to contemporary Mexican art. She is in many important collections including: El Museo de Arte Moderno, Mexico; El Museo de Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Mexico; Dallas Museum of Art, TX; and National Museum of Women in the Arts, Washington D.C.