James Mulligan


Currently working in the context of abstract painting, James's working process developed from studying and experiencing urban landscape through outside drawing and by developing and abstracting these drawings into geometric paintings. Initially the idea of non-place was the subject driving his practice, studying places of transience such as underpasses, train stations, motorways and asking how he could recreate this sense of transience through painting. He then discovered an architectural quality in the work; He developed this further and began to study the architecture of the urban landscape such as high-rise flats and monolithic structures. He became dissatisfied with this process and found that creating abstract pictorial space through the application of paint was actually the aspect of his practice creating the most interest for himself.

Through this new approach the work is based on the notion that an abstract painting can become something in its own right not describable in terms of narrative or subject matter but existing purely in a painterly language, such as the application of a colour and responding to that colour. He is interested in how an illusion of space can be created by combining something of substance such a thickly applied square in conjunction with a more transparent background.