John is an artist, musician and academic based in London whose work ranges across painting, drawing, installation, moving image, sound and performance.
Recent solo exhibitions include Head Case, Contemporary Collaborations, London (2019) and Anna Lies, Domobaal, London (2017). Recent film screenings and performances have been shown Hoxton 253, London (2020), FuturShock, London (2019), Swedenborg Film Festival, London (2018), Worm, Rotterdam (2017), NN Contemporary, Northampton (2017), De La Warr Pavilion, Bexhill (2015) and MK Gallery, Milton Keynes (2015).
John has taught BA and MA Fine at many UK institutions including The Slade, Kingston University, Middlesex University, Wimbledon College of Arts, Loughborough University, and Sunderland University.
Original Copy is a project that explores questions of transference, translation and the phenomena of trapped data.
The project uses a number of devices, such as a modified windup gramophone as a drawing machine, flat bed scanners and watercolour paintings and unique sculptural objects to produce visual material which can be read by a programme written with the software MAX. The project has taken the forms of live performance, sound recordings, video works and installation.
The aim of this project is to explore the possibilities of creating time based audio visual material through an interaction with, or translation of, the surface and process of drawing, painting and other material qualities.[SBD1] The project explores the possibility that all visual surfaces have trapped data which can be captured and utilised.
The project is part of the culture of interdisciplinary as a process of establishing new forms of making as opposed to the practice of multidisciplinary which utilises existent media to orchestrate a work. The project makes the link between the production, translation and performance very visible and will instigate conversations at all sorts of levels both technically and artistically into cross pollinating [SBD2] practices that create content through reuse, repurpose and reiteration. This project is a collaboration with the Bristol based musician and sound engineer Riccardo Carbone.
[SBD1]Yes, this is a helpful addition; it sounds different from the “usual” translations from vision to sound.
[SBD2]This is an interesting word as it implies a result – some fruit from the cross-pollination! What is that fruit? What are the special insights – and who has gained them? What is the evidence for this in the way people have responded, things they have said, new opportunities the work has opened up?
John’s practice has continually drawn on ideas of autobiography, narrative and belief. Earlier works drew heavily on the vernacular of music culture and use of iconography in constructing identity and collective histories. More recently technologies relationship to memory and its decline as well as its conveyance of more esoteric ideas and rituals have unpinned his exhibitions and performances.
Under 5’s is a collection of under 5 minute videos made on mobile phones. Each work draws on footage recorded during the course of everyday activities such as family outings, the journey to and from work and the use of these devices to document both the banal and the particular. Painting, drawing, collage and lo-fi animation are also used to construct imagery which interleave with ambient sound, recorded both in situ and in the studio, alongside music and sound made from a long standing collaboration with Bristol based electronic musician and sound engineer Riccardo Carbone. The growing collection of these films form the basis of a YouTube channel and are edited and reedited according to the environment they are presented in (exhibition, film screening, online or part of a live performance).
Publications, exhibitions, other outcomes
Biscuits Go Crunch and the Frequency Band Screenings, Hoxton 253, London (Group)
Head Case, Contemporary Collaborations, London (Solo)
Up is a Relative Concept, Fold (lab), London (group)
Original Copy (live stream performance), Cypher Billboard Fundraiser, George Tavern, London
Original Copy (performance with Andrew Hart) NN Contemporary, Northampton UK (group event)
Studio.Us is an Experiment, Dyson Gallery RCA, London (group)
Undercurrents, The Artesian Well. London (group)
Swedenborg Film Festival 2018, Swedenborg House, London
Minotaur, curated project, various locations in El Barco De Avilla, Spain
Particular Conditions, Kingsgate Project Space, London, SUBStore in Koenji, Tokyo and Tadahon-ya, in Kyoto, Tokyo (group)
The New Archive, NN Contemporary, Northampton (group)
Original Copy, Worm, Rotterdam (performance with Riccardo Carbone)
Original Copy, part of acts re-acts 4, Wimbledon space, London (performance with Riccardo Carbone)
Anna Lies, Domobaal, London (solo)
Anna Lies, film screening, Gorvy lecture theatre, RCA, London (solo)
Original Copy, MK Gallery, Milton Keynes (performance with Riccardo Carbone)
MK calling, MK Gallery, Milton Keynes (group)
Original Copy, De La Warr Pavilion, Bexhill (performance with Riccardo Carbone)
Six Short Films, De La Warr Pavilion, Bexhill (group)
Grease Madonna, Domobaal, London (solo)
The Right Hand Gives, The Left Hand Takes Away, Extrapool, Nijmegen, Netherlands(Group)
MK calling, MK gallery, milton keynes (group)
Drawing Biennial 2013, Drawing Room, London (group)
Rug Whoops, The Sunday Painter, London (group)
Random Acts, Broadcast On Channel 4, 8/12/11 (Collaboration With George Shaw)
Graphica Creativa 09, Jyvaskylan Taidemuseo, Finland (Band Of Nod Archive)
Precious Things, Highlanes Gallery, Drogheda, Eire (Group)
Parkhaus, Kunsthalle Dusseldorf, Dusseldorf, Germany (Group)
The Band Of Nod, Camden Arts Centre, London (Weekend Event And Performance)
The Band Of Nod, Tate Britain, London (Collaboration With John Hegley And The Archie Bronson Outfit As Part Of Late At Tate)
Chaime Soutine, Happy Sailor Tattoo Parlour (Group) And Barbican Centre, London
Hesitator, Parkhaus, Dusseldorf (Solo)
Hesitator, Liste, Basel (Solo)
The Band Of Nod, Whitechapel Art Gallery, London (Performance At Centenary Show Opening)
Seguridad Social, Ex-Teresa Arte Actual, Mexico City (Group)
External Collaborations and Activities
External Examiner at The Slade, Kingston University and Newport art college University of Wales.