Otherwise All Was Silent : Dana James

22 October - 21 November 2020

The show Otherwise All Was Silent features the American painter Dana James. This is her first solo exhibition in Europe.

The American painter Dana James creates a spectrum of pastel toned colors which creates a note of contradiction in darker, vivid fields of color in fractured multi-panel constructions. Her work oscillates between energetic, impulsive strokes, at once dark and powerful, then combines a matt-colored poetry with a determination of drawing in straight lines and forms. See a line. See that it can be straight, thin, broken, filled or empty, curved or thick. James works with used canvas and bright, garish color which creates a surface that speaks of temporality. James places contrasting materials and processes next to one another, creating multi-dimensional layers, throwing pigments, mark making and drawing. Dana’s process involves a combination of acrylic, ink, oil and charcoal; with encaustic painting which involves wax, fabric and resin. James imagery captures the abstract by deconstructing her materials into discrete elements and reforming them into new compositions. Making invisible things visible in her studio, James creates works of the fallible nature of certainty, of distant memories, of imaginations in intermediate worlds. The gestural process of Dana James’ multifaceted paintings are imagined notions of other places, the anxious scribbling of radical doubt, the poetry of illusion, the act of delusion; and sometimes it all speaks at once. 

My paintings act as panorama of linear time; they serve as a reminder that we are small and predictable, incessantly creating and shedding beautiful accounts of the earth and its elements. Upon completion, they are visual diaries that speak to contradiction, a latency caromed by intermittent activity.

– Dana James

Dana James, was born 1986 in New York, lives and works in Brooklyn, NY, US. She graduated at the School of Visual Arts, NY. Dana James has had solo shows in JAG Modern in Philadelphia, PA, Attic Studios Gallery in Long Island City, NY, in Envoy Gallery and Union Gallery, both in Manhattan, NY, and has shown throughout the United States. Dana James' 'Otherwise All Was Silent' is her first solo exhibition in Europe.


Text: Katharina Balgavy