The Unflinching Gaze
Owen will be exhibiting in The Unflinching Gaze: photo media & the male figure at Bathurst Regional Art Gallery.
Curated by Richard Perram OAM, Director of Bathurst Regional Art Gallery, this major exhibition surveys how the male figure has been depicted by Australian and international artists in photo media over the last 140 years. It includes historic and contemporary fine art photography and film, fashion photography, music videos and homoerotic art.
Key artists in the exhibition include iconic American artists Robert Mapplethorpe, Andy Warhol, and avant-garde theatre director Robert Wilson with a video portrait of Brad Pitt; European artists such as Eadweard Muybridge, and Baron Wilhelm Von Gloeden; and historic and contemporary Australian artists including Beaufoy Merlin and Charles Bayliss, Max Dupain, Deborah Kelly, William Yang, Gary Carsley, Owen Leong and Liam Benson.
In addition to showing recent photographs and a video, Owen will be presenting a new work specially commissioned for this exhibition.
Resistance Training (2017) disrupts a single coherent vision of masculinity, fusing an Asian male body with a Thousand Arm Guan Yin. Usually represented as feminine, but sometimes depicted as masculine, Guan Yin is an East Asian bodhisattva who observes suffering in the human world and offers mercy, compassion and kindness. In a hybrid cultural mashup, this fractured figure extends his multiple limbs to undress. Cast ginger root and quartz crystal are symbolic objects held up in a private ritual of transformation. Arms, shoulders and biceps strain, press and push, hefting barbells and dumbbells to build strength and internal power – training in small acts of resistance.
The first edition of this photograph has been acquired by Bathurst Regional Art Gallery. For more information about editions of this artwork please contact Artereal Gallery.
Ramsay Art Prize
Owen has been selected as a finalist for the Ramsay Art Prize at the Art Gallery of South Australia.
The $100,000 acquisitive prize is Australia's richest prize for young contemporary artists working in any medium. The Ramsay Art Prize is presented by the James & Diana Ramsay Art Foundation and held every two years at the Art Gallery of South Australia.
The judges for the 2017 Ramsay Art Prize are Rhana Devenport, Director, Auckland Art Gallery, contemporary Australian artist Nell, and Leigh Robb, Curator of Contemporary Art, Art Gallery of South Australia.