Lisson Gallery

Jonathan Monk

British artist Jonathan Monk replays, recasts and re-examines seminal works of Conceptual and Minimal art by variously witty, ingenious and irreverent means. Speaking in 2009, he said, "Appropriation is something I have used or worked with in my art since starting art school in 1987. At this time (and still now) I realised that being original was almost impossible, so I tried using what was already available as source material for my own work." Through wall paintings, monochromes, ephemeral sculpture and photography he reflects on the tendency of contemporary art to devour references, simultaneously paying homage to figures such as Sol LeWitt, Ed Ruscha, Bruce Nauman and Lawrence Weiner, while demystifying the creative process. Monk is constantly asking ‘what next?’ His stainless steel series entitled Deflated Sculpture (2009) refigures Jeff Koon’s iconic balloon rabbit in various stages of collapse; letting the air out isn’t an act of iconoclasm so much as giving the original idea new life. So too Monk documented the period he lived in Los Angeles with a series of photographs titled None of the Buildings on Sunset Strip (1997–99), showing only the roads between buildings – a follow-up to Ed Ruscha’s artist book from 30 years before, All of the Buildings on Sunset Strip. But his conceptual configurations are also grounded in the personal: ‘what next?’ takes on a poignancy in the slide projection In Search of Gregory Peck (1997), where Monk brought together a collection of photographs taken by his late father in the 1950s, preceding him as a tourist in the US.

Jonathan Monk was born in Leicester in 1969 and lives and works in Berlin. He has a BFA from Leicester Polytechnic (1988) and an MFA from Glasgow School of Art (1991). Solo exhibitions have been held at Vox, Montreal, Canada (2017); The Gallery at De Montfort University, Leicester, UK (2017); Kunsthaus Baselland, Muttenz, Switzerland (2016); Museo d'Arte Contemporanea di Roma, Rome, Italy (2015); Irish Museum of Modern Art (IMMA), Dublin, Ireland (2014); Centro De Arte Contemporáneo (CAC) Málaga, Spain (2013); Kunstraum Dornbirn, Austria (2013); Palais de Tokyo and Musee d’Art Moderne, Paris, France (2008); Kunstverein Hannover, Hannover, Germany (2006); Institute of Contemporary Art, London, UK (2005); and Museum Kunst Palest, Dusseldorf, Germany (2003). His work has been included in many group exhibitions, including the Whitney Biennial (2006), the 50th and 53rd Venice Biennales (2003, 2009), Berlin Biennale (2001) and Taipei Biennial (2000). He was awarded the Prix du Quartier Des Bains, Geneva in 2012. 

Jonathan Monk
Covered Motorbike, 2013
Bronze 131 x 221 x 95 cm / 51 9/16 x 48 x 37 3/8 in.

Jonathan Monk
The Void, 2013
Marble 130 x 29.5 x 6.2 cm / 51 3/16 x 11 5/8 x 2 7/16 in.

Jonathan Monk
Something To See Something To Hide III, 2013
Mounted digital print, powder coated metal frame, plexiglass 182 x 121 x 3.5 cm / 71 5/8 x 47 5/8 x 1 3/8 in.

Jonathan Monk
Pig (blue), 2012
Ceramic 70 x 105 x 65 cm / 27 9/16 x 41 5/16 x 25 9/16 in.

Jonathan Monk
Senza Titolo III, 2012
Jesmonite bust with nose broken by Pier Paolo Calzolari Bust: 45.5 x 21 x 26 cm / 17 15/16 x 8 1/4 x 10 1/4 in. Base: 150 x 50 x 50 cm / 59 1/16 x 19 11/16 x 19 11/16 in.

Jonathan Monk
Senza Titolo I , 2012

Jesmonite bust with nose broken by John Baldessari Bust: 45.5 x 21 x 26 cm / 17 15/16 x 8 1/4 x 10 1/4 in. Base: 150 x 50 x 50 cm / 59 1/16 x 19 11/16 x 19 11/16 in.

Jonathan Monk
Senza Titolo II, 2012
Jesmonite bust with nose broken by Jannis Kounellis Bust: 45.5 x 21 x 26 cm / 17 15/16 x 8 1/4 x 10 1/4 in. Base: 150 x 50 x 50 cm / 59 1/16 x 19 11/16 x 19 11/16 in.

Jonathan Monk
Do Not Pay More Than $60,000, 2009
Neon 40 x 70 cm / 15 3/4 x 27 9/16 in.

Jonathan Monk
Deflated Sculpture III, 2009
Stainless steel 43.2 x 90.2 x 47 cm / 17 x 35 1/2 x 18 1/2 in.

Jonathan Monk
Deflated Sculpture II, 2009
Stainless steel 71.1 x 73.7 x 39.4 cm / 28 x 29 x 15 1/2 in.

Jonathan Monk
Deflated Sculpture I, 2009
Stainless steel 104.1 x 68.6 x 45.7 cm / 41 x 27 x 18 in.

Jonathan Monk
What is Seen is Described, what is Described is Seen, Version VI, 2010
Acrylic on canvas 155 x 135 x 7 cm / 61 x 53 1/8 x 2 3/4 in.

Jonathan Monk
What is Seen is Described, what is Described is Seen, Version IX, 2010
Oil and acrylic paint on cotton 46 x 72 x 47 cm / 18 1/8 x 28 3/8 x 18 1/2 in.

Jonathan Monk
My Right Hand With Its Reflection Enlarged to Human Proportions, 2007
White neon and mirror 150 x 150 cm / 59 1/16 x 59 1/16 in.

Jonathan Monk
The Two O's in Jeff Koons Used as Eyes (yellow), 2009
Neon 34 x 20 cm / 13 3/8 x 7 7/8 in.

Jonathan Monk
A Short Story Translated by My Mother & Milk (Candle), 2008
Painting on wood with Neon Neon: 84.7 x 14.5 cm / 33 3/8 x 5 11/16 in. Painting: 30 x 30 cm / 11 13/16 x 11 13/16 in.

Jonathan Monk
Incomplete Open Paperclip I, 2006
welded steel pipe construction (pulvercoating) 176.5 x 174 x 187 cm / 69 1/2 x 68 1/2 x 73 5/8 in.

Jonathan Monk
Incomplete Open Paperclip V, 2006
welded steel pipe construction (pulvercoating) 310 x 312 x 297 cm / 122 1/16 x 122 13/16 x 116 15/16 in.

Jonathan Monk
The Unconnected Connected Forever, 2006
pair of wedding rings, motor, shelf

Jonathan Monk
Nine Measurements in White, 2005
Painted aluminium Dimensions variable

Jonathan Monk
Big Ben Piece, 2003
35mm Slide Projection with timer Variable

Jonathan Monk
All the possible combinations of five colours, 2002
35mm Slide projection with 120 hand-coloured slides Dimensions variable

Jonathan Monk
Lost Days, 2002
16mm film loop Projection size: 9.5 x 8 cm / 3 3/4 x 3 1/8 in.

Jonathan Monk
Keep Still (DG) 01, 2001
Black and white photograph 29 x 38 cm / 11 7/16 x 14 15/16 in.

Jonathan Monk
Sol Lewitt: 100 cubes Cantz/ Slow slow quick quick slow / front to back back to front / on its side, 2000
16mm film loop Dimensions variable

Jonathan Monk
Closed, 1998
Black and white photographic print 34 x 41 cm / 13 3/8 x 16 1/8 in.

Jonathan Monk
The Distance Between My Mother and My Sister, 1998
40 black and white photographic prints, text on paper Frame: 112.5 x 116.8 x 4.5cm / 44 5/16 x 46 x 1 3/4 in. Panel 29 x 29.5 cm / 11 7/16 x 11 5/8 in.

Jonathan Monk
No. 88 (Tenerife), 1992
Oil on canvas 85 x 57 x 4.5 cm / 33 7/16 x 22 7/16 x 1 3/4 in.

Exhibitions

  1. Jonathan Monk: I ♥ 1984

    14 November 2014 – 17 January 2015

  2. Jonathan Monk: Senza Titolo

    23 May – 19 July 2013

  3. Jonathan Monk & Douglas Gordon: Double Act...

    23 June – 31 July 2010

  4. Jonathan Monk: The Deflated Inflated

    20 May – 13 June 2009

  5. Jonathan Monk: Second Hand

    29 November 2006 – 20 January 2007

  6. Jonathan Monk: Projected Works

    30 January – 8 March 2003

  7. Jonathan Monk

    24 October – 21 November 1998

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