The unquantifiable nature of what is left behind after we have reduced, removed and sculpted an object is a primary fascination of Liverpool born artist, Jonathan Owen. What happens to an objects identity when it has been altered? How do we know when an artwork is finished and how do we recognise permanence are all questions considered within his practice.
Owen takes ready-made objects, most notably, sculptural busts and film stills and shapes, crafts and re-thinks their formal qualities, creating artworks which are physically less, but conceptually more.
The classic and antiquated qualities of busts and sculptures have centred in a vast series of earlier works by Owen. He begins with a found sculpture, originally crafted in a traditional and regimented way. From here the original form of the artworks are altered and re-shaped using rustic processes; such as the use of a knife or bone. Owen carves chain links through the hearts of the sculptures to create new and contemporary dialogues for artworks previously considered ‘complete’.
For Between poles and tides, Owen’s Eraser Drawings can be viewed on the lower level of Gallery One. Similar to his sculptural works, Eraser Drawings are representative of a mysterious and enigmatic practice, wherein Owen removes layers of ink from images, displaying and uncovering what was or could have been.
Image Chris Park
Lauren Hawkins, Talbot Rice Gallery intern.