Joel Parkes trained at Chelsea College of Art as a Public Artist and instigated his career with 7 years at pioneering Public Arts company, Free Form Arts Trust. Established in Hackney in 1969, to put people at the heart of changing their environment, by working together creatively. Operating primarily on the regeneration of East London Joel carried out such projects as the creation of Shoreditch Park, Shepherdess Walk and designing various sculptures and engagement projects for The Shoreditch Trust.
Joel specialised in working with young people coming out of prison, devising and comprising design teams for his various public art projects, providing education and employment. His signature style are large scale hand carved wooden vessels, allowed to split and warp, then repaired using various techniques, principally pewter and gold