New show debuts at Art Dubai – running from March 17 – 20All images and text courtesy of Traffic
James Clar, a Dubai-based multi-disciplinary artist, will be debuting new works at the upcoming Art Dubai Fair. Entitled ‘Acceleration’, the show continues his fascination with new visual methods and sees him working in a number of mediums.
James Clar is represented by traffic, a multi-disciplinary art practice in Dubai. He has been a resident of the UAE for 2 years, and has worked on numerous artworks that have been specifically inspired by the city. Working with new materials and ideas has proven to be an exciting process for the artist, especially in the region.
‘Acceleration’ by James Clar
‘Acceleration’ is a dynamic statement on the continuously evolving times we live in. The works deal with powerful themes such as politics, violence and xenophobia as well as the universally human ideas of love and pleasure. Pieces include ‘Pop Culture’ which deals with our tendency to glorify violence; ‘A Moment Defined by a Point and A Line’ which comments on the killings of three influential political figures; and ‘Iron Fist’, a multi-media piece that symbolises passionate and aggressive nationalism. On the opposite side of the spectrum are ‘For You, Anything’ which illustrates the lengths we go to for love, and ‘Acid Electric’, that pays homage to the artist’s early influences of music, electronics and the subcultures associated with them.A Moment Defined By A Point and A Line, 2010
30 cm x 42 cm x 20 cm In the words of the artist – “The 3 pieces in this series each represent a historical assassination. They reduce a pivotal moment in history to basic math, the point of impact for each bullet and the angle of trajectory, displayed as lines of light intersecting a clear acrylic block.”
The subjects chosen for the series are Malcolm X, King Faisal, and Amadou Diallo. Malcolm X was shot 16 times during one of his speeches on black nationalism. King Faisal was shot by his nephew twice, in what is believed to be a CIA driven assassination, and Guinean immigrant Amadou Diallo was shot at by American police 41 times -19 of the bullets hit him. In the case of Diallo, all the police involved were found not guilty of manslaughter.
The pieces in this series bring up questions of world politics, especially the current state of Western/Middle East ties. The Amadou Diallo piece specifically looks at the pre-globalized society of the late 90‘s – when America’s problems were largely domestic issues, rather than the current state of ethnic and religious xenophobia. These are the types of questions this series asks, reduced to a line of light with an X-Y point and an angle.For You, Anything, 2010
155 cm x 120 cm “When you love someone you will do anything for them. It’s a matter of mind over body.” This artwork features a light box with medical X-Ray scans of broken bones creating the shape of a heart. Tube lights spell out the word “YES”. With this piece, any delicate notion of love is stripped down to one visceral truth – there are no limits with love.
James’ work is a fusion of technology, pop art, street culture, and design. He has been recognized by numerous institutions and publications following his thesis project in 2004 for the NYU Interactive Telecommunication’s Program. He has been the artist-in-residence at Eyebeam Atelier in New York, and was the inaugural artist for the FedEx Institute of Technology & Lantana Projects in Memphis. James has exhibited at numerous gallery spaces including New Museum of Contemporary Arts, Chelsea Art Museum, Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Milan Trienniale, and did a collaborative piece for the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) New York, which was purchased for their permanent collection.
He is currently artist-in-residence at traffic.
‘Acceleration’ debuts at Art Dubai 2010 at Stand B-23, traffic.