Summer Exhibitions 2013

This summer James Straffon presents three new bodies of work, two featuring limited edition print series, one a set of twelve original canvases. They debut in London galleries, and focus on the visually and emotionally rich landscape of sport and culture heritage.

An exhibition celebrating 100 editions of the Tour de France.

June 27th - July 27th 2013
Snap Galleries
12 Piccadilly Arcade,
London SW1Y 6NH 

Following last year’s successful LE TOUR exhibition, artist James Straffon revisits the greatest sporting race in history, this time framing its 100th edition within the poetic stanzas of John Milton’s epic poem Paradise Lost. Presented at SNAP Galleries, London, this exhibition runs from June 27th to July 27th, 2013.

Echoing the twelve books of Paradise Lost, Straffon’s 100e is presented as twelve limited edition prints, each themed around a line from Milton’s prose; embellishing this artistic reinterpretation through an intricately-montaged vista of vintage press photographs and graphic forms. These Goya-influenced plates show the drama of one-hundred editions of the Tour de France, depicted through its own rich and colourful timeline. In assimilating the narrative of Paradise Lost, Straffon presents 100e against a backdrop of universally artistic subjects - descent and ascent, light and dark, immortality, rebellious angels, the anti-hero, temptation, and the pursuit of Paradise.

Showing for the first time at London’s SNAP Galleries, James Straffon’s 100e exhibition will feature a limited edition print series, including ‘Imaging the Century’ - a foreword written by Graeme Fife - author of The Beautiful Machine.
And the Defining Moment.

June 17th - 23rd 2013
Showcase Gallery
33-35 St John’s Square, Clerkenwell,
London EC1M 4DS

Across twenty-one compositions, James Straffon’s Chroma series presents reworked Kodachrome colour negatives - as homage to Henri Cartier-Bresson’s ‘Decisive moment’. Each diptych embraces the Frenchman’s edict that “Colour is for painters,” forming challenging juxtapositions from early-colour sports journalism. These provoking split-screen compositions use the BBC’s (and Europe’s) first ever colour TV broadcast - 1st July 1967 - from the Wimbledon Lawn Tennis Championships as a trigger - mapping the emergence of colour as a defining moment. 

Chroma exhibits the ghosts and memories of competition, as fountainhead for a new era, via the sports men and women who passed by the lens of reportage sports journalist Gerry Cranham - a torch-bearer in the 1948 Olympics. And in contrasting the manipulative force of Cartier-Bresson, against the ethos of Roy Lichenstein’s scaled-up cartoon artworks of the mid-1960s, Straffon forms a new narrative - or defining moment - as chroma changes the way we see the world.

From originals by GERRY CRANHAM

All artwork, text and images © James Straffon 2024.