|"Self Portrait", 1953, oil on canvas|
While absorbed with the female figure, portraiture is not Owen’s prime concern. Rather, her concerns are primarily formal. Inspired by a variety of modernist art movements such as post-impressionism and German expressionism, Owen uses the model as a point of departure to explore the figure, creating a mood in her works through the placement, pose, and strongly accentuated forms of the model and using striking colours and manipulating paint for maximum visual impact. As stated by Owen in an interview with Alberta Culture in 1972:
I’m not a socially conscious painter or environmentally conscious painter. (My work) entirely revolves around my own personal relations with other people.
Co-curated by Chris W. Carson and Shane Golby, Violet Owen: Modern Woman shows at the Visual Arts Alberta Gallery in Edmonton until January 31, 2015. The Visual Arts Alberta Gallery is open on Wed-Fri from 10 am - 4 pm and on Sat from 12 - 4 pm. The Gallery will be closed from December 21, 2014 through January 6, 2015.