James Bradley is an artist living and working in Portland, Oregon. He received his Master of Fine Arts degree from the California College of the Arts in 2009.
Direct all correspondence to:
jamesbradley [at] startmail [dot] com
475: An Attempt at Irreducibility (the Simplest Possible Artist Statement) #1
I feel a great existential drive to produce objects that serve as a record of my being. I feel a great spiritual drive to imbue these objects with personal meaning, seeking the universal through the particular, the infinite through the finite, and thus making these objects not only a record of being as such, but of the evolution of my soul* as it passes through this life. The inherent paradoxes generated by the production process are what allow for and fuel the ongoing reinvention of the singular object which would otherwise suffice.
*If it is true that the soul is eternal and unchanging, then understand this statement to mean “the evolution of my understanding of my soul.”
476: An Attempt at Irreducibility (the Simplest Possible Artist Statement) #2
I exist as a being that is aware of its own existence. I feel the (irrational?) desire to create a record of my own existence. In order to comprehensively auto-record the existence of a being that is aware of its own existence, this awareness itself must serve as recorded subject above and beyond the basic subject of existence. The interplay between existence and awareness must be the central subject.
477: An Attempt at Irreducibility (the Simplest Possible Artist Statement) #3
I exist as a contingent being aware its own contingency (i.e. impending death—whether death be an ending or a threshold, or both, or neither). I desire to create a record of my being, a record which I know is itself necessarily contingent, but which nevertheless possesses the possibility to outlive its creator by a wide margin.
478: An Attempt at Irreducibility (the Simplest Possible Artist Statement) #4
I exist, and wish to create a record of my own existence. In order for this record to be pure, that is, to exist as record alone (and therefore in some imperfect-yet-mysterious sense to stand outside the chain of causality) it must be free of any primary or secondary utilitarian value. Therefore the art object seems to be the most fitting form the record may assume.
479: An Attempt at Irreducibility (the Simplest Possible Artist Statement) (Addendum)
All matter, however small or fleeting, leaves behind a trace of its existence in ripples upon the chain of causality. That this is true of what we call “spirit” is far less certain. For this reason the art-practice-as-record should concentrate on matters of the spirit, rather than on the literal content of day-to-day activity (this rules out a simple diaristic solution to the problem of what form the record should take). However, the quotidian circumstances of one’s life need not be excluded from the record altogether. They find their place to the extent that they serve to illuminate spirit.