JAJA is a multidisciplinary visual artist with an eye for innovation. Her extensive arts background is inclusive of painting, mixed media, art direction, graphic design, marketing and arts management. The cultural elements reflected in JAJA’s work are representative of matrifocal ancestry lines, the ways of our old people and the process of being a byproduct of Australian assimilation policies. Fusing symbolic gestures with layered primal markings, JAJA creates vividly textured artworks pertaining to identity, country and current socio-political concerns.
With a background in art direction and graphic design, JAJA moved into photography and paint based mixed media with self portraiture as the focal point for inquiry. After her first solo show in 2003, a more impassioned agenda emerged and she set off for Berlin. There the streets of Kreuzberg, reflecting the transience and impermanence of life, set light to a new medium; stencil art. For the next few years she wandered the streets questioning our current societal structures, seeing the awakening and integration of our ‘old ways’ as the only practice forward. The hybrid experience of the street and the gallery took place in the ‘Lock Up’ (2007) where for 13 days and nights JAJA painted the walls and floors; the gallery her canvas. Here she explored the notion of taking street art off the street to help educate about this public media platform.
Within the exploration of self, identity and society over the past 13 years, the aspect that continues to intrigue JAJA most is the examination of the conditioned mind … ‘what turns me on is the raw grit and underground of the psyche, the essence of not immediately understanding, and then the slow revealing of the stories and guidance from our old ones’.
JAJA has delivered works for solo and group exhibitions since 2002.