James Read

James Read


About James Read

Sometime ago I found an old book from the Pelican series about architecture and was fascinated by the pictures in it, I also found another about grasses from the same series. I liked the contrast between the architectural photography and the simple line drawings of the grasses. I pulled some of the pages out, pasted them together and painted on them. Since then my work has been about collecting and combining old pictures to give them new meaning.
After works have been pasted down for weeks or months I will return, soak them and and peel off some of the layers to allow reworking. As time has gone by I have realised what's the rush? So some pieces can be set aside for months or even years while I savour the working process.
Artists who have influenced me include Joseph Cornell, Hannah Hoch and Francis Bacon.
I was born just outside Southampton in 1965 and raised in the city. I studied at Winchester School of Art, Gwent College of Higher Education and Chelsea College of Art and Design. Now I'm based in Oxford where I work with vulnerable adults in my local community. Since my children were born I've been quite focused on family life and haven't set much time aside for exhibiting my artwork though continuing to be creative is very important to me.


Chelsea College of Art and Design 1989-1990
Gwent College of Higher Education 1986-1989
Winchester School of Art 1984-1985


Royal Academy of Arts Summer Exhibition 2014
Rochester Contemporary Art Centre 6x6 2014
Rowley Gallery London 2013
Oh Brother Where's Thou Art Ultimate Picture Palace Oxford 2012
Art4wards Nuffield Orthopaedic Centre Oxford 2011
Inspiration Interpretation Artist/ Teachers Town Hall Oxford 2009
Oxford Show Modern Art Oxford 2008
Affordable Art Fair London 2005
Stuckist International Green Street Oxford 2001
The Art Supermarket Harvey Nichols London and Ludwig Beck Munich 1999
Proud Gallery London 1998
Discerning Eye Mall Galleries London 1995
Royal Overseas League Young Artists Award London and Edinburgh 1994
Winsor and Newton Young Artists Award Mall Galleries London 1992
Royal Society of Etchers and Engravers Bankside Gallery London 1992
Humberside Printmaking Competition Ferrens Art Gallery Hull 1991