Through cynicism and belligerent play, Jake Francis embodies the spirit of a snake oil salesman. Begrudging the role of ‘artist’ and it’s institutions, Jake inevitably relies on it’s cliches and tropes to make work and progress through its gilded halls - acutely aware of the hypocrisies associated in the process. By toying with preconceived structures, the artist attempts to reconvene both social and trivial issues with simultaneous wit and intentional ignorance.
Breaking the cardinal rule of using art for entertainment, Jake wishes to release art from its divine status and bring it back to the everyday, secular world. Like the modern tabloid, Jake’s practice is filled with blanket statements, flippant commentary and cheap sensationalism - carrying with it the same ethical difficulties. In a time where galleries rely on the ironic combination of inherent elitism and a scramble for visitor footfall and postcard sales, Jake’s practice is one that aims to inhabit the no-mans land that ‘art’ has been in for some time; an uncomfortable middle-man of aesthetic experience and commercial inelegance. Misrepresented as a ‘glass half empty’ sort-of artist, it’s clear that he is less skeptical of the water, but the glass itself.
CV & Education
Unsuccesful artist, amateur lover.
My artistic focus is predominately within alteration of the everyday. Through simple appropriation of the familiar, I find that artworks hold much more gravity than the average painting or marble sculpture; there is a reliability in something that was once classed as ‘normal’.
But hey - why take my word for it? It's not like I'm rolling in the money is it?
That being said, I do have a variety of skills in the more ‘formal’ areas of artstistic production, including:
-Photoshop and Illustrator
-Curatorial experience and critical writing/theory
Norwich University of the Arts
BA (Hons) Fine Art - 2:1 grade obtained with commendations.
Stowupland High School Sixth Form
3 A-Levels including Fine Art, Psychology, and English Literature (CBB grades obtained)
Stowupland High School
8 GCSEs including Maths, English, Fine Art etc etc (All A-C grade)
Solo exhibition. The Ron Cooke Hub, University of York. 5th-16th May 2014.
Solo exhibition. Nunns Yard, Yallops Yard, Thirteen A galleries. Norwich. 16th-31st December 2014.
Art Rooms 2016
Group exhibition. The Melia White House hotel, London. January 2016.
In Loving Memory #2
Group exhibition (Co-curator). Geddes Gallery, London. 23rd - 26th June 2016.
Group exhibition (Co-curator) . Safehouse 1, Peckham Rye, London. 3rd - 6th May 2018.
Arts contributor and critic - The Verse: Brighton's official student newspaper
"Nipple Jesus", short film (contributing artist). November 2015
Contributing artist - 'We Happy Few' video game, Compulsion Games.
Featured - Average Arts magazine, September 2016
Featured - Art Reveal magazine, November 2016
Alongside my own artistic practice, I have also taught abroad. Through participation on the Camp America scheme I have worked three seasons at a Massachusetts summer camp. Within this camp, I tutored a range of children aged 4-15. These lessons included: cartooning, painting, drawing, photography, and basic art theory. For the keener students, I also constructed a range of support documentation in preparation for future artistic careers. This included: portfolio advice, presenting your work to an audience, networking, and constructing an effective argument.
When not working as a tutor, I also took up a leading role in the camp's photo marketing department. This entailed me photographing the kids during activities, obtaining peace of mind and comforting images for the parents back home. This task was also vital for the camps social media profiles, relying on these photographs to illustrate the website and yearbook.
Most recently, I have been given more responsibility in organising whole camp events. This has included working creatively on new and ongoing ideas as the summer progressed, and making sure we achieved new heights to excite the kids imaginations. Examples of this include: Martian day!, a casino based Olympics, and Bring Your Rubber Duck to Camp Day.
In 2015, I was promoted to Art Director of Camp Emerson; this role required me to construct a diverse curriculum of art courses, including: Jewellery, Mixed Media, Cartooning, Felting, Junk Art, Contemporary studies, and Sculpture/Ceramics. Alongside this, I was responsible for a large team of creative practitioners - providing teaching support and guidance in how to construct an effective lesson strategy.
2012- Camp Emerson art councillor
2013- Camp Emerson art councillor & camp photographer
2014- Camp Emerson art councillor, camp photographer, and special events officer
2015- Camp Emerson art Director and special events officer