JOEL DICKENS: Insanitizer

23 July - 16 August 2020

PIERMARQ* is thrilled to welcome Joel Dickens back for his second solo exhibition with the gallery. 


INSANITIZER | Joel Dickens


Whilst this body of work was primarily executed during the Covid 19 crisis and lockdown period, it also addresses events that have been unfolding, prior to, and alongside the pandemic. It is also the latest manifestation of the stylistic approach that I have been developing over the last few years.


These are, indeed, unusual times. We have gone from one ‘unprecedented event’ to another. The world seems gripped by forces of destruction and disruption that we, as individuals, seem to have little control over. ‘Insanitizer’ attempts to capture the unsettling sense of chaos and discombobulation many people are feeling at this moment. It contemplates the events that are challenging us; political, environmental, technological and, these days, virulent. 


The work is intended to be viewed and understood from both a macro and micro perspective. The universal and the personal. The exterior and the interior. A metaphor for the emotional impact a moment in history can have, upon our society and the individual. From a distance they depict events we have all been witness to; chaotic, confusing, sometimes barely comprehensible. Up close they reveal the focus, resilience and resistance that is required, to cope with and respond to such challenges.


It is easy to feel despairing at a time like this. One wants to switch the radio off and run away! It’s a natural urge in a struggle for self-preservation. When the world has taken turns, beyond our wildest predictions, it’s easy to become dispirited and start to wonder what difference we can make as individuals. But we are each one string to the bow of our collective recovery. What we can do is unite and galvanise the likeminded. We can acknowledge the plight of, and try to empathise with, those going through a far tougher experience. We can choose not to run away. “The darkest hour is just before the dawn”. Hopefully, on the other side of all this, a light will be shone over some of the issues that have lacked the attention they both require and deserve. 


Joel Dickens