Jioni Warner

Jioni Warner’s most known work is a trilogy of portraits that gained the Judges Choice Award at the 2021 ‘Ones to Watch’ Exhibition. The portraits discussed the exploitation of black women in society and it’s links to historical events and encourage conversations on the triple marginalisation of race, gender and class Black women face on a daily basis.

In her portraits, Jioni uses photo transferred images as a contextual background, gathering images from social media, archives, articles, and internet sources. The viewer is left to reflect on the relationship between the profusion of images and the figure in the portrait. In her work, Warner uses herself as the subject and creates characters to evoke the theme of the painting to form the narrative and experience. The subject will often have a strong outward gaze to command authority and take up space, Warner is interested in replacing the gaze which has been traditionally white in art with a black woman opening a discussion on the representation and stereotypes placed on the black body.

Warner is going through a self-fuelled enquiry and examining her ancestry through embodying heritage in a performative way and through portraiture, in doing so showcasing the depth of history that goes into Black British which questions the vague label placed on Black people in Britain and the vocabulary used to describe Black people. The layering in her work also aids in referencing the multi-layers of experiences and culture that is being Black British and Caribbean.

Jioni was born in Leeds, graduated from Staffordshire University in 2021, and has recently completed her MA in Fine Art at Liverpool John Moore’s University. By using a range of mediums such as portraiture, collage, and photography, Warner discusses the black British experience and identity by looking at her position as a contemporary Black British woman.