Julian Rowe’s work has developed from a sculptural exploration of repetition and randomness, into a multidisciplinary engagement with weighty, and even epic, narrative themes drawn from history and literature. Such ambition is unsustainable without a pinch of irony, and his work is underpinned with hints of sardonic humour. The apparently documentary nature of much of his work also invites scepticism, as underlying it is a questioning of the nature of narrative itself. We understand the world through stories, but the stories we tell do not necessarily map onto the world. Julian is an inventor of fictions and it was not surprising to find him some time ago in a makeshift beach laboratory at Folkestone persuading passers-by that an invisible object was hovering above their town.
Julian gained a BA (1st Class Hons) in Philosophy and Art History with the Open University (1984), and MA in Fine Art with Distinction from the University for the Creative Arts, Canterbury (2010). He has shown widely and undertaken a number of public commissions. Recent shows include: Le Fantôme de la Peinture, Rezdechaussée, Bordeaux / Gestures of Resistance, Romantso, Athens/ It’s Too Soon to Say, Surface Gallery, Nottingham / Cherry Time, Elysium Gallery, Swansea / Cathedrals, Musée des Beaux Arts, Rouen / I'd Like to See the Governor Now Please ... or Whoever is in Charge, Parfitt Gallery, Croydon. Prizes: Painted Surface Open, Nottingham / Quay Arts Open, Newport IoW / Discerning Eye, London. Publications include: a contribution to Earthworks, by Andrew Kötting, Badbloodandsybil) / The Folkestone non-linear para-spectrometry field study, UCA / Capriccio, Chrome Green.