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Artwork by Edward Powls Jones
Essay by Mark Holborn
Art / Photography
9.6 x 10.2 inches
80 four-color plates
Faith, Hope and Love, the first comprehensive examination of the life’s work of Edward Powis Jones, details a remarkable artistic journey that begins as an accomplished American painter living in Paris in the shadow of the Second World War and concludes as that of an exceptional and surprising photographer whose work has no precedent.
Jones employed all the disparate art mediums of his era and produced a life’s work that is startlingly cohesive. After developing a passion for printmaking, he produced sculptures in bronze, wax, plaster, and papier-mâché. By the time of his death in New York in 1998, Jones had been treating photographic emulsion as painter’s gesso for more than a decade and had become fascinated by the potential of the photocopier.
His enormous artistic output springs both from an abiding affection for his family and from a deep sense of loss, with roots in the early death of his parents. Beneath the surface of his work lies something disconcerting, if not menacing. Jones’ conversion to Catholicism is reflected in etchings of the Stations of the Cross and paintings depicting the Crucifixion. Yet despite the focus on mortality, especially his own, his work also displays great joy and humor.
His final pictures—including radical, large-scale painted photographs shot from a London hospital bed—show his ability to incorporate every aspect of his life into his unique artistic expression. Throughout his career, Edward Powis Jones maintained a highly personal, singular artistic vision that admitted no consideration of compromise and that will, with Faith, Hope and Love (its first publication), make a dynamic contribution to the social discourse.
Edward Powis Jones was born in New York in 1919. His work is in the permanent collections of The Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Museum of Modern Art, the Whitney Museum of American Art, and the Brooklyn Museum of Art, New York; the Philadelphia Museum of Art; The Parrish Art Museum, Southampton, New York; the Walker Art Center, Milwaukee; the Mead Art Museum, Amherst; and the Victoria and Albert Museum and the Tate Modern, London. Jones lived in New York and London, and died in New York in 1998.
Mark Holborn is an editor and author working between London and New York. He has produced books with many artists and photographers including William Eggleston, Lee Friedlander, Nan Goldin, Irving Penn, Lucian Freud, and Robert Mapplethorpe. Holborn is the author of several books on Japan and Japanese art, including Beyond Japan (Jonathan Cape, 1991) and Black Sun: The Eyes of Four (Aperture, 1986). He has also written for and edited numerous books, such as The Babies by Polly Borland (powerHouse Books, 2001) and Bobcats by Eric Payson (powerHouse Books, 2001).