Approved: 26.07.2011

James Moore

Artist, Curator

Approved: 26.07.2011

In all of my work my core interest lies in the relationship between a viewer and an image. It’s an interest that is so common it’s shared with almost every artist working today. I hope to draw the viewer into a narrative with the work, and it’s this process of looking and projecting oneself into an image-space that I’m essentially interested in.

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  • Location: Cardiff, Wales
  • Activities: Lecturing, Residencies, Private commissions, Curating, Exhibitions programme
  • Categories: Animation, Digital, Painting
  • Tags: Painting, Paint, Game, Photo, Animation, Virtual, Entropy, Landscape, Dream, Surrealism




    In all of my work my core interest lies in the relationship between a viewer and an image. It’s an interest that is so common it’s shared with almost every artist working today. I hope to draw the viewer into a narrative with the work, and it’s this process of looking and projecting oneself into an image-space that I’m essentially interested in.

    My paintings explore our seemingly increasing detachment from the real world within a visual culture of ever increasing simulacra. The scenes that I depict are dream-like, being the product of imagination and inner-space more than any observed reality.

    For me, painting has always been about fakery – about synthesising the visual world into a plastic space. It has little to do with transcribing direct observations onto canvas, but more to do with mimicking the plethora of media into a synthetic representation, that still retains the elements of human looking – but looking more inwards than outwards.

    I’m interested in aggravating and manipulating my role as a painter of realistic imagery. There’s no truth to be found in my work, the paintings are of subjects that are usually either fake, don't really exist, or are impossible to see in the flesh, but that still have a collective reality amongst groups of people. They act as a pointer to the plastic, simulated space that we increasingly inhabit. I often use source material that is a bad copy of the ‘real’, such as a museum diorama or computer game. I’m interested in exploiting the falseness of painting and mediated representations, and investigating a kind of melancholy that I feel when confronted with the apparently total embracement our culture has for the virtual, the simulation, the construct.

    More recently, my work has been an investigation of real historical events and places, using photographs and drawings of actual places to manufacture montages that are then enlarged as a final painting. This work takes history to be a kind of narrative story, viewing pictorial historical scenes as a type of badly constructed dream-like space, based on a few basic facts. I piece together some kind of representation of these scenes based on montages, and the final paintings of historical events are oddly funny, sad, human..

    Constructed landscapes and fictional spaces are my starting point for an exploration of painting as another simulacra, in amongst the endless virtual images and simulations we see every day. I work in a kind of photorealist style, but the source images I use are a collage of media and the final painting becomes a weird hybrid far removed from reality. 

    The animated films are an extension of my painting practice. The different scenes are made by texture mapping small hand painted elements on paper and constructing them into a 3d scene. A rolling camera shot pans through scenes that reflect experiences and thoughts, inter-mixed with external things - memories of real places, the threat of conflict we keep hearing about everywhere on the news, strange buildings and skies. There’s a vending machine for dreams functioning as a sort of reflection on the seemingly runaway marketisation of everything. There’s a tent inside a museum diorama - it could be someone living in a museum exhibition space, or a person in an enclosed habitat in a museum from the future, an odd character who has gone on a camping trip in various shop window displays, or someone in a nuclear bunker decorated to give the impression of a mountain range. A bill-board depicting a giant eye directly references surrealism - much of the surrealists work focuses on the eye, the returning gaze, the closed eye signifying an internal world, the open eye the external world. But also this scene is referring to the models staring at us from larger than life pictures all over our cities, the viewpoint is looking in from the outside, the viewer is located in the desert of the real – as described by the philosopher Jean Baudrillard. His writing on simulation and simulacra is a primary interest for me.

    CV & Education

    Qualifications and training

    2002 - MA Fine Art, Chelsea College of Art & Design, London
    2001 - BA (Hons) Fine Art, Manchester Metropolitan University, Manchester

    Solo exhibitions

    2014 - Counter Worlds, Futures Gallery, Cardiff
    2013 - Mount Analogue, St David's Hall, Cardiff
    2001 - Arc Arts, Arc Gallery Store, The Northern Quarter, Manchester

    Group Exhibitions

    2016 - Sound & Vision, Paper Gallery, Manchester
    2016 - Semiotic Guerrilla Warfare part III, Dean Clough, Halifax
    2016 - London Art Fair, Paper Gallery, London
    2015 - [dis]Corporate Bodies 11, The Unstitute
    2015 - artists@WAR, GalleryELL
    2015 - The Manchester Contemporary
    2015 - Art Copenhagen, Denkmark
    2015 - Generation Loss, Paper Gallery, Manchester
    2015 - KÖLNER LISTE, Cologne
    2015 - London Art Fair, Paper Gallery, London
    2014 - Exhange Rates, Paper Gallery, Sluice Art Fair New York
    2014 - Manchester Contemporary, Paper Gallery, Manchester
    2014 - 'Play!', Access Space, Sheffield
    2014 - Cites of Ash, g39, Cardiff
    2014 - Snow in Summer, Peek-a-Boo Gallery, Perth
    2014 - Barnaby Festival, Paper Gallery, Macclesfield
    2014 - Supermarket Independant Art Fair, Paper Gallery, Stockholm
    2013 - Alter//Shift//Control, Bermondsey Project, London
    2013 - Terraform, Mid-America Arts Alliance, Kansas City
    2013 - Sluice Art Fair (with Paper Gallery)
    2013 - Manchester Contemporary (with Paper Gallery)
    2013 - New Lights Art Prize, Mercer Gallery, Harrogate
    2013 - Trajector Art Fair, Hotel BLOOM!, Brussels
    2013 - A State of Un-Play, Atelier 35, Bucharest, Romania
    2013 - Waste Lands, Greenlease Gallery, Kansas City
    2012 - Digital Romantics, Dean Clough Gallery, Halifax
    2012 - Launch Exhibition, Paper, Manchester
    2012 - Manchester Contemporary, Paper, Manchester
    2012 - Outcasting: Fourth Wall, Various Venues, Cardiff
    2012 - Welsh Artist Of The Year, St David's Hall, Cardiff
    2012 - Y Lle Celf, National Eisteddfod of Wales, Vale of Glamorgan
    2011 - Sho Home, Sho Gallery, Cardiff
    2011 - Winter Show, Sho Gallery, Cardiff
    2009 - Wood, Canvas, Steel?, Tactile Bosch, Cardiff
    2005 - Makeshift, Midlands Arts Centre, Birmingham
    2005 - Sefton Open, Atkinson Art Gallery, Southport
    2005 - Shelved, Octopus Gallery, Athens
    2004 - Le Petit Paysage, Liverpool Biennial Independents & Comme Ca Art Gallery, Liverpool & Manchester
    2003 - AAS Sci-Fi Double Bill, Various Venues, Birmingham
    2003 - XTC Ga Ga, Century Gallery, Cremer Street, London
    2002 - Group Exhibition, The Students Gallery, Wimbledon, London
    2002 - Red Mansion Art Prize, The London Institute Gallery, Millbank, London
    2001 - Fresh Art, Business Design Centre, Islington, London
    2000 - Departure Lounge, 1st Class Departure Lounge, Terminal 3, Manchester Airport

    Curated projects

    2012 - Create, Observe, Perform, Alkovi Gallery, Helsinki
    2011 - Virtually Real, Stanley & Audrey Burton Gallery, Leeds
    2010 - Virtually Real, Blyth Gallery, London
    2006 - Britishness, Cornerhouse, Manchester
    2006 - Making Love To My Ego, Castlefield Gallery, Manchester
    2004 - Peep Show, Warsaw Gallery, Manchester
    2003 - Show Home, Timber Wharf, Castlefield, Manchester


    2014 - Atelierhaus Salzamt, Linz, Austria
    2012 - On-line Residency, The Unstitute, London
    2011 - Residency, Cite des Arts, Paris

    Competitions, prizes and awards

    2013 - New Lights Art Prize, Mercer Gallery, Harrogate
    2002 - Red Mansion Art Prize Competition, The London Institute Gallery, Millbank, London