Catalogue of Rachel Owen's 'The Inferno illustrations'

Bodleian Library, University of Oxford

Margaret Czepiel

Department of Special Collections
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Rachel Owen's photographic prints created in response to the 'Inferno' poem in Dante's Divine Comedy,


Rachel Owen's 'The Inferno illustrations' comprising 34 photographic prints of mixed-media collage works, created in response to the 'Inferno' poem in Dante Alighieri's Divine Comedy.

Extent: 1 box
Language(s) of Material: English


MS. 13147

Biographical History

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'.

Scope and Content

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.

Restrictions on Use

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.

Preferred Form of Citation

Oxford, Bodleian Library [followed by shelfmark and folio or page reference, e.g. MS. 13147, fol. 1].

Other Finding Aids

Full descriptions of the prints are in Pembroke College JCR Art Gallery, Rachel Owen: the Inferno illustrations. (Oxford, 2017).

Personal name(s) (NCA Rules)

Alighieri | Dante | 1265-1321| poet
Owen | Rachel |1968-2016 | artist

Corporate name(s) (NCA Rules)

Oxford University | Pembroke College


Dante Alighieri, 1265-1321 -- Influence
Dante Alighieri, 1265-1321. Divina commedia -- Illustrations
Dante Alighieri, 1265-1321. Divina commedia -- In art
Hell in art
Prints, English -- England -- 21st century

Transformation from XML (EAD 2.0) to HTML
12 February 2019