Born in Dublin in 1952, James studied painting and anatomy under both Yann Gaoulet, RHA, who taught him to ‘look and observe’ and Liam Treacy, who taught him to use colour in a loose impressionistic way. He later continued his studies at Dun Laoghaire College of Art & Design and the National College of Art & Design, studying under Desmond Carrick, RHA.
James’ paintings, easily and quickly recognisable, are about the proficiency of colour rather than tone, and the essence of capturing the subtle nuances of light. His full range of Irish subject matter; boats, harbours, landscapes, portraits, farm animals, horsefairs, markets, street scenes, are brought to life in his stunning handling of paint. Vibrantly rich, striking colours are worked in a loose impasto virtuosity to reflect the mood, colour and light of place that inspires him. James wonders at the increasing modernisation of an ever-changing Ireland and recognises a way of Irish life that continues to prevail but that one day may be lost. In great mastery James acclaims these Irish cultural traditions capturing a time; a moment; but most of all a profound and inherent emotion in us.
James has exhibited in many major galleries in Ireland and overseas. His work is hanging in private collections throughout the USA, Ireland and mainland Europe. Collections include Concern, Aer Rianta, University College Dublin, and Government House.
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