About the Artist

Joanna Mules is a Belfast-based multi-media, multi-style, multi-subject artist, inspired by a multitude of stimuli and unfettered by expectation. In her spare time she enjoys singing, reading, gardening, walking, good food and company. She loves nature and the arts and culture of the world. All these and the pressing current concerns of environment and politics inform her subject matter. New techniques and materials – currently bronze casting – are a source of innovation and development in her work.

July 2016



4 man exhibition in Engine Room Gallery, Belfast (Imagining Beyond)



solo exhibition touring NI libraries, Maitri Studios (as part of East Belfast Arts Festival) and An Culturlainn of portraits of Northern writers reading to the artist from their work (Read To Me)“The artist, Joanna Mules, is well known for her portraits and these are wonderful – full of life, sensitivity and empathy, each with its own special, yet revealing character. Some she has worked in pastel, others in charcoal, some in collage and some a combination of media, lithograph/mixed or monoprint/acrylic.”

Elizabeth Baird

“Absorption, amusement, contemplation, intensity, concentration, surprise, pleasure – all of these are reflected in Joanna’s beautifully sifted portraits, the use of colour modulating with the different temperament of each sitter, and his or her relationship with the text in question…

…And so these subtly revealing pictures draw us in, as all good art does, by asking at least as many questions as they provide answers. What is the reader reading? What does he or she think about it? Does the way we read reveal something interesting about the way we are?

There are no definitive answers to these questions. The fun is in the asking, and Joanna Mules – wry, suggestive and humanely empathetic in her observations – is the gentle, perspicacious framer of the information we need to make our judgements, and to prompt our further investigations and reflections.”

Terry Blain



solo exhibition Flowerfield Arts Centre, Portstewart (Big Game Hunting)

“Joanna Mules’ skill as an artist places her amongst the finest of the artists working in Northern Ireland today.

 The artistic energy … of this recent small show puts her firmly centre stage. Within this quixotically named exhibition, “Big Game Hunting”, an assurance of line in her animal drawings is pure, spare, inspired, a refreshing interlude where the gusto of mark, whether pencil, biro, pen and ink or acid etched, pays homage to masters of a former age but is still tenaciously her own. The show was demonstrative of her approach to drawing and painting: elegant, articulate, purposeful, and presented in the full knowledge that she is part of a long cultural tradition.”

Deborah Logan

“The subject matter of this exhibition is animals, birds, fish and insects.  We take them for granted, in hostility or sentimentality, all the while that lots of them are under pressure and disappearing, road kill as the motorways of human structures, systems, and finance get ever more lanes. The methods of making are an ecosystem in themselves, calling on all her skills from all the situations in which she has worked. So there are formal framed works, informal sketches, theatrical sets, unexpected games and foraged materials put to new uses. She has even called on husband and friends to compose music on animal themes.
    See the exhibition’s space as a hospitable space, a space for further creativity – yours, not just the artist’s – and you will be in tune with the intention of the exhibition. Appreciate the pictures, and also how a rhino can appear delicately from frayed old materials, or skeletons can be made from tin cans and polystyrene cups, or go magnetic fishing. But she does want a point to be communicated, in the ways of a good conversation.”

Julian Watson



2 man exhibition in Linen Hall Library, Belfast (portraits of writers reading from their work)(Words and Music)


2009 – 2014

Stage designer for Zezere Arts in Portugal


1990 – Present day

Various art workshops, lectures and demonstrations in schools and in the

community, and also on behalf of Belfast Print Workshop and the Royal Ulster Academy.



Commissioned self-portrait for the National Self-Portrait Collection of Ireland, Limerick



Head of Art at Rockport School, Cultra



Presenting a design elective in QUB School of Architecture, leading to becoming part-time assistant in lecture team for First Year Architecture students.



Solo exhibition Ulster Arts Club



Solo exhibition Bell Gallery



Elected an Associate of the Royal Ulster Academy



Taught Art in Princess Gardens School



B.Ed. Art and French from Stranmillis College of Education



Attended Belfast College of Art & Design