Jonathan Owen is an artist and practice-led researcher. He is interested in the systematic transformation of readymade objects, selected for their implied material and cultural stability. Controlled collapse and destabilisation are used as methods of production and reactivation.
In an ongoing series of sculptural interventions, Owen uses carving methods commonly associated with rustic craft traditions to disrupt and 're-pose' neoclassical European marble sculpture. Statues and busts carved in the 17th-19th Centuries are partially re-carved and transformed into precarious new propositions. Through a methodical process of physical dislocation and disruption, the familiar rhetoric of each object is punctured and it becomes a space for questioning relationships between patriarchal power, permanence, value, and inherited archetypal images of the human body.
Owen's 'Eraser Drawings', made using found book pages, can be considered as carvings in two dimensions. Most recently these have been drawn from publications on cinema history; film stills, portraits of stars or documentary images on-set. Gradually removing ink from the surface of the page, Owen erases the foreground figures, reshaping them into inanimate details of the scene they once inhabited.