Jessie Edwards-Thomas

Jessie Edwards-Thomas is a visual artist based in Britain. She originates from Snowdonia, North Wales. Her artistic practise explores the idea of the  individual and the individual's placement within society.  Themes of belonging, alienation and structural interrogation are key to her practice.   Her practice utilises the what-ifs of fiction and imagination to explore said themes of power, symbols, societal structures and connection through storytelling.

Jessie's practice is deeply connected to ideas of community.  Recently, Jessie was commissioned by The Bristol Photo festival, Arnolfini & Golden Key to work collaboratively with people to explore issues of Housing & Wellbeing in Bristol. This was exhibited at The Arnolfini, Bristol, in 2021. 

Jessie's community-led process has resulted in her working with programmes such as, Springboard Studios -  Falmouth University, Vareki Arts Outreach programme - Royal West of England Academy and Building our Home - InBetweenTime, etc. 

Jessie is a Lecturer at the University of the West of England in Bristol.  She is currently  Research Assistant for the EU Erasmus project ArtsHub, supporting the inclusion of migrating and refugee young people into communities across Europe.  

In August 2022 Jessie co-designed and facilitated the ReWilding Creativity Residency with artist/educator Laura Blight. It was a residency for creative practitioners. The residency was inspired by the values and principles of permaculture prioritising connection through symbiotic relationships. The residency included a series of process-led photographic workshops utilising organic materials and sustainable processes, providing a creative and supportive environment in which artists  immersed themselves.  The University of West of England funded two graduate spaces that created an opportunity for current graduates to design and facilitate their own workshops, building confidence and network. 


Awards & Commissions

2023 - Picturing Englands High Streets, Commission, Bristol Photofestival, Historic England & Photoworks

2023 - Arts Health Early Career Research grant, University College London & University of Toronto 

2022 - Vareki, Commission, Royal West of England Academy, Bristol

2021 - Shortlisted for Golden Key Great Practice Award for collaborative practice

2021 - Blueprint: Housing and Wellbeing, Commission, Arnolfini, & Bristol Photofestival, Bristol

2020 - Exceptional Support Beyond Teaching Award nomination, Students Union, UOG

2020 - Most inspiring Lecturer Award nomination, Students Union, UOG

2019 -  Building our Homes, Commission, InbetweenTime, Bristol

2019 - The Biscuit Factory's Open Contemporary Young Artist Award

2019 - Shortlisted for The ESPY Photo Award

2018 - The Sproxton Award for Photography

2018 - Highly commended for The Photofusion Award

2016 - The Slim Hewitt Award for Photography

2014 - Shortlisted for The British Life Photography Awards


2022 -  The Winter Exhibition, Heart of Tribe, Glastonbury 

2021 - Bristol Photo Festival , The Arnolfini, Bristol 

2021 -  Odesa Photo Days Festival, Ukraine

2020 - Covid_2020, 212 Productions, Bristol

2019 - Mostyn Open 21, MOSTYN Museum,  Llandudno, Wales

2019 - Carnival POP-UP exhibition,  Martin Parr Foundation Photo Lab,  The Arnolfini, Bristol

2019 - Uprooted, Group exhibition, ArtHub,  London

2019 - ESPY Photo Award exhibition, Elysium Gallery, Swansea

2019 -  Dancing in Peckham, Peckham24, London

2019 -  The Biscuit Factory's Contemporary Young artist award exhibition, The Biscuit Factory, Newcastle-upon-Tyne

2018 - UMBRA, University of Arts, London

2018 - Flux, The Freespace Project, London

2017 - Monochrome, Limehouse, London

2016 - Trajectory Graduate Online Exhibition, The Print Space

2016 - 306 Degrees, The Roses Art Centre, Tewkesbury

2016 - Review, University of Gloucestershire, Cheltenham

2016 - Reconnecting Bristol, St Marks Centre, Bristol

2016 - Body & Vibes, Typical Girls Magazine Exhibition, London

2016 - Terra Nostra, The Gardens Gallery, Cheltenham

2015 - Etalage, AWOL Gallery, Manchester

2015 - Bath Arts Biennial Festival, Bath

2014 - 38 Degrees, The Bearpit, Bristol

2014 - Foto39, Christmas Steps Gallery, Bristol

2009 - London Royal Academy Young Artists Summer Show, London


2018 - MA Photography,  DistinctionUniversity of the Arts, London 

2016 - BA Photojournalism and Documentary Photography, First Class HonoursUniversity of Gloucestershire, Cheltenham 

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