Jo Whaley’s theatre


Jo Whaley, Knows No Secrets, 1991

Still life artist Jo Whaley is an example of someone who’s early career comes back and influences their later one. As an undergraduate student in San Francisco she studied painting before her postgrad studies in photography. She then worked for several years as a scenic artist for the San Francisco Opera and other theatre companies. This job meant painting backgrounds, arranging props and working with lighting designers.

These art and theatre experiences later became the core of her photographic practice – she treats her still life photographs as small theatrical sets. The colour, lighting and placement of props evoke the stage setting of her early career, the difference is she works in the small arena of the still life table.

You can see more of her beautiful still lifes at her website, She has also published a book of her still life photographs in The Theater of Insects.


Jo Whaley, Consuming Habitat, 1992


Jo Whaley, Pulp Exposed, 1992



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