Jason Mulligan studied fine art at the University of Northumbria, leaving with a fascination with sculpture. Shortly after graduating, he was offered a Bronze Casting Fellowship. After completing this, Jason spent time in Carrara with Paul Mason, one of his university tutors, working with him in Carrara’s marble yards. It is here where he developed his passion for working with stone.
Jason worked with sculptor Hamish Horsley as his assistant in London, which was his introduction to working on large-scale public commissions. In 1999 he assisted Hamish with his design and installation of the Tibetan Peace Garden in London. Jason is now based in Kent on a farm that was, fittingly enough, a disused ragstone quarry.
Jason’s powerful forms arrive through working with his material organically, following the shape of the quarried off-cut, if he’s working with stone, and enjoying the unpredictability of patination with bronze. He is loosely inspired by ancient artefacts and objects which have a link to the past, such as palaeolithic stone tools or Iron-Age artefacts. With his work he seeks to conduct ancient narratives which hint at tribal objects, fertility figures, deities, icons, and religious statues, all reformed in his own fluid yet bold visual language.
Jason sites the beginnings of his fascination for the ancient and the geological back to his childhood in Northern Ireland: ‘coming from Ireland I was spoilt for choice. At an early age, I made trips that took me to Stone Age monuments such as Newgrange and other important ancient archaeological sites. I was exposed to so much geological history, so, as I get older, I have noticed that my work seems to organically reference the heritage of where I come from.’
His work is inspired by iron-age devotional objects. Variations of the bronze sculptures are originally made in stone, before being adapted and re-made in bronze, the Verdigris and burnished patination mimicking the colour of the original, authentic artefacts from the Iron Age. In this way, both stone and bronze constantly feed into and inform each other throughout Jason’s practice
Jason was elected as a member of the Royal Society of British Sculptors in 2008. He has shown at On Form and has successfully delivered a multitude of public art projects across the UK and Ireland. His work is in private collections in countries such as France, Germany, USA, and Norway.