Isobel Knowles and Van Sowerwine’s practice blends miniatures, photography and animation in unique and emotionally charged surreal environments. What fascinates them is the tension that lies beneath and the grey area that exists between two apparent contradictions. What appears on the surface is only the beginning of the story.
Their latest body of work, Can’t Do Without You delves into the psychological impact of lockdown in Melbourne. Knowles and Sowerwine each created miniature versions of the rooms in which they spent the endless hours of lockdown. These sculptures are filled with personal items found in makeshift live-work-play spaces, evoking memories of our collective confinement, where our furniture became landmarks, etched in memory. Through these works, Knowles and Sowerwine reflect upon the dislocation they felt when separated from each other.
Isobel Knowles and Van Sowerwine have collaborated since 2001 on stop-motion animation films and interactive installations which have screened and exhibited across the world, most notably at the 2019 Venice Film Festival, the 2012 Prix Ars Electronica, GOMA, MONA, NGV, the Art Gallery of NSW, the ICA London, Festival de Cannes, Sundance and the Chicago Film Festival.