The new paintings included in “New Special Good Times Forever” are a synthesis of Kirkpatrick’s diverse interests. They reference sci-fi shows, cartoons, conspiracy theories, voodoo graffiti, fabrics and video games. Stylistically, Kirkpatrick is interested in the aesthetic of old graffiti. Kirkpatrick states: “I find it interesting when old graffiti is painted over or there are parts of old graffiti that eventually become exposed from time or weather. That effect is something that I have been trying to emulate lately, sanding down the surfaces I am painting, showing the multiple layers of past marks or different figures/marks that I have painted over.”
The title of the show, “New Special Good Times Forever”, encapsulates the feeling that Kirkpatrick wants to convey when looking at the exhibition. Special / Forever might be something that you hear in a comic book or the name of an action hero. Or, it could be something a radio announcer says about a summer hit song from the 1980s or the feeling that you get from doing something so awesome that you can’t believe that it is real. “New Special Good Times Forever”, in reality, is something that everyone wants all the time in their life – for everything to be good & special & fun all the time.
James Kirkpatrick is a multi-media artist, avant-guard hip-hop musician, inventor, designer, graffiti artist and collaborator. He is nothing but a perpetual creator and hard worker. Born in London, Ontario in 1977, James Kirkpatrick studied art at H.B. Beal Secondary School before receiving his BFA at Halifax’s Nova Scotia College of Art and Design in 2002.
He has exhibited his work extensively throughout the US and Canada including shows in New York, Boston, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Miami, Halifax, Toronto and Vancouver. In 2009 Kirkpatrick was featured in the group show Pulp Fiction, which traveled from Museum London to the MOCCA in Toronto and St. Mary’s University Art Gallery in Halifax. He was also featured in recent group shows Not Bad for London at Michael Gibson Gallery, L.O. Today at Museum London and Sculpting Sound at the Judith & Norman Alix Art Gallery in Sarnia.
Kirkpatrick’s most recent solo exhibition Secret Base By the Lake at Western University’s McIntosh Gallery will be accompanied by a forthcoming exhibition catalogue with essays by curators Matthew Purvis, James Patten (McIntosh Gallery) & Rhiannon Vogl (National Gallery of Canada).
Also known for his participation in the early Canadian graffiti movement and as avant-garde hip-hop artist “Thesis Sahib”, Kirkpatrick works in a variety of media including drawing, painting, sculpture, zines, mask-making and experimental sound improvisation. In recent years, his work has incorporated sculptural, kinetic and auditory elements.