Kaptan June's bounty

A conservation project in recognition of the Kaptan June Sea Turtle Conservation Foundation (established in February 2011), and its extraordinary founder June Haimoff (MBE).

For over twenty-five years, Essex-born Ms Haimoff has fought to protect the sea turtle (primarily the Loggerhead Turtle [Caretta caretta]) breeding grounds centred around the Dalyan River Basin, Turkey. With support from a variety of patrons, including Sir David Bellamy and Prince Philip (under his role as President of the WWF), her work has resulted in Dalyan/Iztuzu Beach becoming a Specially Protected Area (SEPA).

These works were commissioned by Cafe Ines, 587 Green Lanes, London.



All artwork, text and images © James Straffon 2021.

MERCY MERCY ME



MERCY MERCY ME
200 x 122 cm.
Spraypaint and acrylic on recycled board.
In 1971, Marvin Gaye wrote a song called Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology). It featured on his iconic album What’s Going On. The track was intended to strike a resonant chord, as an erstwhile archaic anthem, bringing light to the ills of environmental degradation. At the time he told Rolling Stone magazine “I began to reevaluate my whole concept of what I wanted my music to say. I realised that I had to put my own fantasies behind me if I wanted to write songs that would reach the souls of people. I wanted them to take a look at what was happening in the world.”
Half a century later, the poignant words of Gaye’s flipped paean to industrialisation, corporate greed and the wanton destruction of the natural world have been lost under a deluge of vanilla popular music, and artistic expression primarily derived from introspection and shallow excess. His closing refrain ‘How much more abuse from man can she stand?’ is at once heart-rending, tragic and painfully prophetic.
Mercy Mercy Me (The Ecology)
Marvin Gaye. June 10th 1971. Tamla. (3:14)

Mercy, mercy me
Things ain't what they used to be, no no
Where did all the blue skies go?
Poison is the wind that blows from the north and south and east

Mercy, mercy me
Things ain't what they used to be, no no
Oil wasted on the ocean and upon our seas
Fish full of mercury

Mercy, mercy me
Things ain't what they used to be, no no
Radiation under ground and in the sky
Animals and birds who live nearby are dying

Mercy, mercy me
Things ain't what they used to be
What about this overcrowded land
How much more abuse from man can she
stand?


All artwork, text and images © James Straffon 2021.

Sirdar Chit Chat


Three Chaffinches and a sparrow begin a conversation on a London front garden wall.




 


All artwork, text and images © James Straffon 2021.

Shanti

Langham Place, London, July 2021.
With special thanks to

Seema Chandwani
Labour Councillor for West Green Ward
Cabinet Member for Transformation and Public Realm Investment
and
Stefanie Turton
Head of Housing (London and the South East)
Sanctuary Housing

Shanti

Print. Limited edition of 25. Signed.
Pigment print on Hahnemühle German Etching.
29.7 x 42 cm.
£150
(plus postage)

TO PURCHASE CLICK HERE TO SEND AN EMAIL

All artwork, text and images © James Straffon 2021.

Let's Stay Together [The Mandarin]






All artwork, text and images © James Straffon 2021.

Banksy Most Wanted


Directed by
Aurélia Rouvier and Seamus Haley

Runtime: 90 minutes
Studio: Canal Plus

Aurélia Rouvier and Seamus Haley are two documentary directors based in Paris.
In their first collaboration, Banksy Most Wanted, they combine their journalistic approach and love of art in an entertaining art investigation.

Interviewed by
Aurélia Rouvier

Filmed by Cinematographer
Mathias Denizo


All artwork, text and images © James Straffon 2021.

An Objective Abstract - a commission for Lubetkin's Highpoint, London


In 2015, James Straffon was commissioned by Architecture and Design practice Coppin Dockray to create a special interior mural for a client. The keystone, around which Straffon answered the proposal of a mural to be painted within a Modernist apartment in Highgate, London, was 'relevance'. There should also be some mechanic to forge a link between architecture and art.

Exploration of Highpoint's architect Berthold Lubetkin lead to his schooling around 1917 at the VKhUTEMAS - a Moscow-based school of art and architecture (the Soviet forerunner of the Bauhaus). Here Lubetkin was taught by leading innovators of 20th-century art, among them Kasimir Malevich - a pioneer in directly linking abstract art with architecture. Malevich introduced ‘Architectons’ or ‘tectonics’ - imaginary structures intended to transform our conception of our lived environment. This would latterly influence the naming of Lubetkin’s architecture practice ‘Tecton’.

In 1915, Malevich had developed an abstract art form called Suprematism - a painterly language of shapes and colours, which liberated the artist to depict greater spatial freedom. Free from the shackles of representation and the clichéd visual depiction of objects, this would become a series of 'non-objective' abtracts. Architect Zaha Hadid has been greatly influenced by this avant-garde system for describing space.

Adopting the core vernacular of Malevich’s Suprematism, Straffon devised a visual story - a journey through the spaces surrounding the proposed mural - from public to private areas - using colour and form to describe this journey and relationship. An initial non-objective abstract was formed from a series of carefully created forms - running from a large wall facing the Living Room, up a central staircase, and finally onto a landing which interfaced bedrooms and study rooms on the first floor. The result - a shared materiality, a relevance to its placement, and the sense of a form about which the surrounding architecture grew.

Following a second client consultation, Straffon subverted the original proposition of a 'non-objective abstract', adapting the concept to convey the ‘domestic’ and ‘private’, as well as a sense of belonging. This he translated into ‘personal’, with a requirement to harmonise; be relevant; apposite in its location.

Research in Anthony Gormley and humanist art, Leonardo da Vinci and the 'vitruvian man', Le Corbusier's 'Modular', the Nazca Lines, Anthropometry and sacred geometry would lead to series of measurements peculiar to the client - devised in two ways - via an abandoned Russian means to measure space, alongside the various widths and heights of books belonging to the client (using either spine or cover).


An interior installation street artwork by artist James Straffon set in Lubetkin Highpoint London

An interior installation street artwork by artist James Straffon set in Lubetkin Highpoint London

An interior installation street artwork by artist James Straffon set in Lubetkin Highpoint London

An interior installation street artwork by artist James Straffon set in Lubetkin Highpoint London

An interior installation street artwork by artist James Straffon set in Lubetkin Highpoint London

An interior installation street artwork by artist James Straffon set in Lubetkin Highpoint London

An interior installation street artwork by artist James Straffon set in Lubetkin Highpoint London

An interior installation street artwork by artist James Straffon set in Lubetkin Highpoint London

An interior installation street artwork by artist James Straffon set in Lubetkin Highpoint London

An interior installation street artwork by artist James Straffon set in Lubetkin Highpoint London


An interior installation street artwork by artist James Straffon set in Lubetkin Highpoint London


An interior installation street artwork by artist James Straffon set in Lubetkin Highpoint London

An interior installation street artwork by artist James Straffon set in Lubetkin Highpoint London

An interior installation street artwork by artist James Straffon set in Lubetkin Highpoint London



All artwork, text and images © James Straffon 2021.

Studio 54




[spray paint and graffiti marker on vintage skateboards]

£750

FOUR DECKS REMAINING. EMAIL shop@james-straffon.co.uk FOR BUYING INQUIRES.

This collection features a series of skate deck portraits, commemorating the famous New York nightclub - Studio 54, located at 254 West 54th Street, between Eighth Avenue and Broadway in Midtown Manhattan.

An interrelated quintet of iconic artists were frequent patrons - Andy Warhol, Keith Haring, Jean-michel Basquiat, Grace Jones and Debbie Harry.



SOLD






"There were the beautiful people, the poseurs, the fantasists... It was about the mix of people, all in one place."
Grace Jones



"It's a dictatorship at the door and a democracy on the dance floor."
Andy Warhol





SOLD








All artwork, text and images © James Straffon 2021.