I feel that my work on multiple layers of acrylic is my nexus work, in that it is singular in style, approach, application, medium, and surface and, accomplishes this goal through a unique layering process.
I like to say that these paintings have ‘five-noses’ because the work offers a variation of experience from many different perspectives; from a distance and up close, as the daylight shifts throughout your home, to the warm firelight interacting within the layers of paint at night. These paintings are alive within their environment becoming ‘living paintings’ as the shadows shift with the moving light, and light dances among the many layers. Looking into these trees is a surreal experience that is best done in person.
Trees are multi-layered in their approach to life. Their full story cannot be revealed at once but, through understanding what they offer all living things. Trees are uniquely powerful. With a network of roots below the earth they reach out to all trees with aide and protection helping them thrive even if, they are of different species. Trees provide community not only for each other but, for all living things. They are unselfish in their giving. They are our shelter, our shade, our perch, and our swing, providing our food, our oxygen. Trees know what they are meant to be from seedling, which at our very core if we listen as artists, we know this too. Without hesitation trees grow upward offering all of themselves fully toward the sun. This is why I paint trees, because trees are unhindered in their creative spirit. Trees know only the present and, in this very moment trees give all they have to life.
Art is about all types of giving, hopefully enriching other life. My work represents the many layers and possibilities albeit sometimes complex, that we all see and experience in life each day. This work cannot be seen in one layer although that single layer is a painting in itself. The full experience requires the combination of all five layers to reveal the contemporary landscape that waits to be seen through a combination of vibrant color and abstract shapes. Ultimately reveled is a nostalgia perhaps, of peering into an antique kaleidoscope. To experience these multi-layered paintings is to see light, life and movement interacting between the painted panes, breathing, as shadows cast themselves and shift throughout the changing light of day. I feel these paintings capture the abstraction of nature herself.
James’ work on multi-layered acrylic is singular in approach, application, material and style. Combining the layers of classical realism, and an old technique from the 18th century, reverse painting, James works to create trees abstractly, deconstructing old world tradition on modern-day material. Each layer is revealed from back to front adding a depth and richness that can be seen in the final 3-D result.
James was classically trained for two years in an Atelier in the Bay area, has studied abroad in France, and is a part of the Utah Helper lineage of artists. She paints full-time, is represented by four major galleries nationally, participates in museum auctions, receives museum awards and exhibitions. Her work is in collections nationally and internationally, both public and private.