UNCANNY TALES – James Jessop

UNCANNY TALES at Galleri Tom Christoffersen is James Jessop’s (UK/1974) first solo exhibition in Denmark. Featuring Jessop’s latest spoof-horror-b-movie/pulp-fiction-disturbing strangeness, Uncanny Tales continues his series of relentless large-scale epic painterly adventures.

The exhibition represents two tracks of the artist’s production. The first deals with power games embodied in femmes fatales depicted in decadent yet glamorous settings, where sex and violent fantasies seems to be the issues. The paintings are simply visual cocktails, which could match any cover on pulp literature such as ‘true crime detective magazines”, so popular from the 1920ties to the 80ties. The other track shown relates to uncensored, dark sided comics putting forth terrifying scenes as vampire fights mummies and zombies rise from death – a track which is just as intriguing and camp as the seducing retro-crimes.

The artist’s trademark “Horrific” style burst onto the London art scene with impact at Charles Saatchi’s infamous ‘New Blood’ exhibition at The Saatchi Gallery London 2004. But long before entering the establishment – already at aged eleven – Jessop bagan his artistic adventures spraying Hip Hop style graffiti, and today is a highly respected and wel-known street tagger in London.

With a strange story to tell and an approach to the media departing both from graffiti and from the Royal College of Art James Jessop’s direct, dense and dynamic works demonstrate an energy seldom found in contemporary painting.

James Jessop (1974) lives and works in London. He graduated from the Royal College of Art London in 1999. On the 24th October 2008 he founded the “Graffatarian”, an approach to life based on 1970’s New York Subway graffiti writing values. Previous solo exhibitions have been shown at Galeria Thomas Cohn Sao Paulo, Sartorial Contemporary Art London, Rockwell London and This Way Up Gallery London. Jessop has featured in group exhibitions in Copenhagen, Berlin, New York, Melbourne, Bratislava and Sweden. In 2008 Jessop curated Burning Candy at Leeds College of Art and Design, which toured to Sartorial Contemporary Art London. The show presented three of England’s finest graffiti writers Cyclops, Sweet Toof and Tek33(Jessop).

Tom Christoffersen

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