Joshua Bilton works in photography, video and performance, constructing scenarios that both depict and engender subjective encounters with our environment and its histories.
He uses the role of alibi or persona to explore the complex relationship between land, body and place. His performances are often isolated in the landscape and show the bodies attempt to reconcile an inner reality with an external environment.
His current work in progress, through workshops, performances and interventions looks at how the role of ritual, the offering and the animal persona seems in many cases to be used as an alibi for processing loss, grief, death, sickness and
healing. The format of the workshop is becoming increasingly integral to his working process, adopting this as a method of opening up the research and making process to participation and collaboration. He is running a series of workshops at the Wellcome Collection with a final intervention in the building in January 2020.
Joshua has an MA in Photography from The Royal Collage of Art and is currently a lead artist at Kettle’s Yard. He also works with a number of art organisations including Tate Exchange, ACAVA, Flourishing Lives, The Canal & River Trust and Pic London.
He is currently lead tutor in photography at the Royal Drawing School and a visiting tutor at the London College of Communication. His work has been shown in the UK, as well as Europe and USA.
Workshops & commissioned sound performance, Wellcome Collection, London (2019)
Open House Cambridge - Radio broadcast & exhibition, curated by Hannah Kemp-Welch, Kettle’s Yard, Cambridge. (2019)
Light Years, Tate Exchange, Tate Modern, London (2019)
Offering, Tate Exchange, Tate Modern, London (2019)
Unseen Photo Fair, Thread count curated by Der Greif, Amsterdam (2018)
Undersong (solo), SPACE, Mare street, London (2016)
Hello World, L’Atelier-KSR, Berlin Germany. (2014)
Venez Fruits Presses, Paris, France (2014)
Rosphoto, Saint Petersburg, Russia (2013)
CAFF, Sluice Art fair, London (2013)
Bloomberg New Contemporaries, Institute of Contemporary Arts, London (2012)
Undersong, Alignment 1, C-type hand print, 55 x 70cm, 2016
Undersong, 3 screen 16:9 HD projection and sound installation, 2016
Time At Hogchester Arts
Residency period - January 2020
It’s a truly unique space that helped me find the headspace to collect, experiment, perform and make a new video piece. During the ten days I found a rhythm, a spongy feeling where I was super awake to everything new around me.
I woke up, ate breakfast and walked across the path from the cottage where I was staying to the large open barn studio and began working. In the first five days I was lucky enough to work with Brendan Sheils the resident bird ringer and follow him around with a 16mm camera filming close-up shots of the handling process. I was interested in the symbiotic relationship between the human hand and other species and how this has fallen dramatically out of sync due to habitat loss and the environmental crisis we are now facing.
I spent the remaining five days walking along the Jurassic coast and collecting stones that slot perfectly into the palm of my hand, getting caught at high tide, almost getting washed off a peer by a massive wave, becoming a hybrid creature part me part bird, writing, hanging out in the Yurt with Dean, the other resident artist and Chantal, stroking a pig, and learning about conservation and rewilding at Hogchester.