The practice of James Richards (born in Cardiff, 1983, lives and works in London) transcends the usual constraints of film and video projection by accumulating imagery in a manner that resists completion. Rather, the material of video is treated as a resource for constant manipulation, and the 'work' emerges through the act of continual reconstitution.
Richards also shifts the form of presentation of his material by moving between formats associated with the public realm - the screening, or the live VJ mix - and the suggestively private and devotional form of the mixtape.
Re-mixing can explore the possibility of repetition and distortion, and can also respond to external factors such as the beat of music or the rhythm of a superimposed narrative. The archive is constituted by a wealth of media imagery, and can speak of multiple possibilities, but also of the obsessive impulse to collate.
Richards' interest lies in the possibility of the personal amidst this media morass, as well as in the scratch form as a means of layering previous intentions, narratives and recordings, and of returning images to the world. For the viewer the sources - which span internet streams, television, online clips, other artists’ films, classic features and original footage - are buried and obscure, but the continually reassembled sequences build on themes of desire and obsession, using the friction between the deconstructed image and untouched footage.
by . Moving Image Review & Art Journal (MIRAJ), 2017, v. 6, no. 1&2.
by . Millennium Film Journal, Spring 2015, no. 61.
by . Art Monthly, Mar. 2013, no. 364.
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