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"Good Luck Everyheart" Debut photography exhibiton, 2021
James’ work is permeated with mysterious and supernatural themes. He often shoots in a sombre low-lit style, depicting lone figures with blurred or obscured faces in natural settings. Inspiration for Good Luck Everyheart came after reading Joan Lindsay’s classic novel Picnic at Hanging Rock, set in 1900’s Australia, in which a group of school-girls and their teacher go missing in the Australian bush. The story embodies the tradition of Australian gothic, a genre that explores the underbelly of the Australian experience - specifically positioning the landscape as a darkly magnetic, melancholic and sometimes hostile place imbued with an ancient mysticism not quite understood. The title of his show was taken from a poem written by a Canadian missing woman - Emma Fillipoff. She has never been found.
These photographs were exhibited publicly and proudly for the first time at the newly re-energised industrial exhibition space The Owen's Collective, Newcastle on Feb 26th 2021. The event was a uniquely beautiful collision of James' music and his art. James commenced the evening with a thrilling one-hour live vocal performance with his in-house band, treating the audience to soaring renditions of songs by Nina Simone, Bill Withers and Billie Holliday amongst others. Everyone stayed back afterwards to look at and discuss the art with the artist, enjoyed a drink (or three) from the pop-up bar and some delicious grazing plates catered by Underground Epicureans. And as the icing on the proverbial cake, he welcomed the incredible local talents of Terence Koo (jazz pianist), Andrew Wallace (bass) and Rob Coxon (drums) as his ensemble.