home exhibitions | interviewsfeatures profileswebprojects archive

Jonathan Michael Ray: Mono No Aware

Auction House 5.11.21-14.11.21





It aint jus behynt us its all roun us (2021) stained glass fragments, lead, oak, chain 71.5x30cm (leaded glass without gibbet)


Landslip, St. Wite, (2020)  paper, wax, cement, plaster, found objects, spring water from St Wite’s Well, Charmouth  clay, windfall oak, and Shapwich Chalk  dimensions variable 


At the Root (2020) HD Video, colour and sound 13m22s Sound by Benedict Mortimer 






Umbra sicut hominis vita (A person’s life is  like a shadow) (2021) handblown bottle, magic lantern slide, iron key, scallop shell, slate, glass, steel  35x20x45cm 




Ere long done do does did (2021) Slate and ink 87x61.5cm 


'In Mono No Aware, an exhibition of new works, artist Jonathan Michael Ray makes use of a  wide range of past and present-time objects, material and processes, brought together in  strangely familiar modes of display. The result is assemblage in many forms, including video, print, stained glass, drawing and sculpture.

The title of the show translates as “the pathos of things”: a Japanese term for an awareness of, and gentle sadness for the transient quality of life. Ray’s work in this installation is inspired by ideas of sacred spaces: including churches, historic  sites, nature and museum collections, and considers the journeys and pilgrimages we all make  in our lives. His work alludes to the sublime power that inanimate material and objects can  contain when we give them space, time and authority to do so. 

Jonathan Michael Ray (b1984, High Wycombe, UK) has been based in West Cornwall since  2018. He studied at Nottingham Trent in 2007 and at Slade School of Fine Art in 2016. Earlier this year Ray was selected to take part in Masterclass at Zabludowicz Collection, London, he and Verity Birt organised "Gathering" a group exhibition at Grays Wharf, Penryn, and has been shortlisted for the National Sculpture Prize which is currently on show at Broomhill Estate in Devon.

Special thanks to Benedict Mortimer for creating the music for At The Root, and Martin Holman  for his accompanying text Hidden Voices'.