Jo Elbourne's methodical practice is preoccupied with the singular act of wrapping cotton braid in one direction against another.

The resulting work is taut and layered. It is concerned with proportion and balance and the idea - both literally and figuratively - of managing tension. 

Jo returned to hands-on making after a decade-long career as a clothing designer.

Her various experiments with textiles, combined with a self-imposed rule to create objects of use rather than ornament, gradually led to a distinctive and modern take on the age-old craft of seat weaving. Reworking discarded furniture frames - partly out of necessity and partly wishing to revive objects which would otherwise be thrown away - the chairs and stools she created occupied a space somewhere between art object and utilitarian surface.

It was this work - exhibited for the first time in the British Craft Pavilion at the 2017 London Design Festival - which first gained critical attention, bringing an Elle Decoration British Design Award in the same year.

Later, moving away from the limitations of functionality, she began making the larger scale wall-based artworks which are now her main focus.


She lives and works in the coastal town of Margate in the South East of England.

Portrait by Kat Green at Resort Studios, Margate - 2018


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© Jo Robyn Elbourne 2020