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Rachel Owen was born in Cardiff in 1968 and studied Fine Art and Italian at the University of Exeter and painting at the Accademia di Belle Arti in Florence. She attained a PhD in the ‘History of illuminated manuscripts of Dante’s Commedia’ at the University of London in 2001. She taught Italian Literature at Pembroke and other colleges at the University of Oxford. She was married to Thom Yorke, a musician and composer, and the singer and principal songwriter of the rock band 'Radiohead'.
Rachel Owen's 'The Inferno illustrations' are photographic prints created in response to the 'Inferno' poem in Dante Alighieri's Divine Comedy. They are based on a series of collages of mixed media: pieces of photographic material, tracing paper, gold and silver pen, coloured pencils, acrylic paint, glue, felt tip pens, graphite and cut up photocopies. The works were on display at the Pembroke College JCR Art Gallery in Oxford between 18 October and 1 December 2017. In the exhibition the prints were accompanied by selected reproductions of pages from the late 14th-century Italian manuscript ‘MS. Holkham misc. 48’ in the Bodleian Library’s collection. This set is no. 2 in the limited edition of 34 sets of prints. Each print comes with a certificate of authenticity dated 4 December 2017 and signed by Fiona Whitehouse, Executor of the Estate of Rachel Owen and Jonathan Tabinor, on behalf of Carbon Colour Printers.
Permission to copy material must be obtained from the rights holder (Fiona Whitehouse).
Donated by Fiona Whitehouse, executor of Rachel Owen's estate, April 2018.
Oxford, Bodleian Library [followed by shelfmark and folio or page reference, e.g. MS. 13147, fol. 1].
Full descriptions of the prints are in Pembroke College JCR Art Gallery, Rachel Owen: the Inferno illustrations. (Oxford, 2017).