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James Russo

James Russo

London, United Kingdom

Artist Statement

The work of James Russo is an exploration of human connection, longing and the mystery of the the world and ourselves.
Shapes and colours flow out of human-like figures, communicating feelings and messages that light up dusky, dark spaces.
Even in fractured, fluid and broken states, there is the possibility of transformation for these figures. They emerge out of black voids, moving across vast landscapes in a search for connection, emotional and physical.
Working mainly in acrylic on canvas, he uses rich, vibrant tones to highlight figures that morph between vivid realistic detail and swirling, geometric shapes. Their emergence out of dark into light conveys a sense of becoming self-aware and connected.
Russo's work takes a range of influences, from the abstract paintings of Paul Klee, the vibrant colours of Japanese (ukiyo-e) wood-block prints to the playfulness of Matisse's 'cut-out shape' works.
Russo has for a long time lived with chronic head pain. The mental weight and grind of this condition, but also the strive to accept pain and instability, to make sense of himself and the world and to connect with oneself and others are all themes of his work. He draws several quick drawings daily, freely expressing his mental state in imaginative, quasi-realistic scenes. Abstraction is used to reveal the 'reality', the truth of his feelings and place in the world. To show the loneliness and pain of the self, but also the beauty and joy of being and connecting with people in spite of this is the over-reaching goal of his

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