AUTOMATTER is the second show in a trilogy by renowned Creative Director DAVID JAMES at GALLERY46.
eE<. v(w) Rather than titling, James refers to his work with codes like ‘eE<. v(w)’, ‘-0|00-o^o’ and ‘,*T =; u\-‘ intentionally obfuscating any reading of the works. OIL PAINT AND GESSO ON CANVAS 100CM X 145CM 2018
In his first show CIVILISATION, James explored the relationship between art history, transformation and personal experience. For AUTOMATTER, he delves into the subconscious mind through his practice of automatic drawing and oil painting.
During the past 10 years, James has developed a method of drawing that continues the spirit of automatism pioneered by surrealist artists such as André Masson. The result is a collection of thousands of drawings and a small number of monochromatic oil paintings that are based on a selection of the drawings. What emerges from the work is a world of inexplicable objects and forms that look vaguely familiar, yet
strangely disconcerting and unknowable, neither wholly figurative nor fully abstract.
Rather than titling, James refers to his work with codes, intentionally obfuscating any reading of the works. Where the drawings are fluid and immediate, the paintings are controlled and precise.
Each drawing takes no more than a few minutes to complete, but on average only one in fifty is considered successful. Those that are not get discarded. The oil paintings are created from the ‘successful’ drawings. Digital printing is used to enlarge the drawings to ‘guarantee the immediacy and quality of the line’ in the original drawing. The prints are overpainted with layers of gesso and oil paint and then wiped away in
various stages to create the monochrome tones and textures that make up the three-dimensional forms in the paintings.
In AUTOMATTER the formal (conscious) elements of art are equally as important to James as the informal (subconscious) elements of the mind.
AUTOMATER 15th October – 8th November Gallery 46 46 Ashfield Street, London, E1 2AJ gallery46.co.uk
About The Artist
David James one of the most prominent Creative Directors working today – of his eponymous agency David James Associates – has created campaigns for the likes of Alexander McQueen, Calvin Klein, Chloe, Loewe, Louis Vuitton, Marc Jacobs and his best-known work for Prada and Miu Miu and also known for being the Creative Director for AnOther Magazine / AnOther Man. Whilst creating globally renowned campaigns James has also been working on his art for over 20 years but not until last year had he shown his work and now is presenting his forthcoming show, the second in a trilogy of shows at GALLERY46 – ‘AUTOMATTER’, his previous being the 2017 show ‘CIVILISATION’. dja.dj