James Ireland transforms commonplace industrial objects and synthetic materials into sculptural installations that allude to sublime romantic landscapes. He emphasises the tendency to add poetic significance and feelings to synthetic objects. His sculptures deconstruct our contemporary interpretations of idyllic landscapes, which are usually based on portrayals in holiday brochures and adverts rather than real-life experience.
Ireland’s installation comprises six steel frames arranged to mimic the format of traditional landscape painting. Perspex sheets with tonal gradations of blues and oranges, embellished with tree branches, adorn the frames. The work comes to life as viewers step within. Sunlight, filtering through the work, splashes tropical tones of blue skies and fiery sunsets across the plaza.
Reflections from two polished steel plates on the ground balance the composition while echoing the geometry of surrounding buildings. These panels give the effect of a calm lake reflecting the branches, sky and clouds. With each step, a different picturesque scene is evoked – only to be broken by the reflection of towering buildings or a suited passer-by. Suddenly we awake from our reverie while remaining aware of inner temptations to let ourselves be deceived.
James Ireland graduated in 1999 from the Ruskin School of Fine Art in Oxford, and was included in ‘New Contemporaries 2000’, an exhibition touring Britain. As well as solo shows at Angel Row Gallery, Nottingham (2005), Spike Island, Bristol (2003), and f a projects, London (2002 and 2005), he has featured in numerous international group shows. Exhibitions in 2007 include: The International Triennial of Small Sculpture, Slovenia; The Idea Of North, Castlefield Gallery, Manchester; Contemporary Art Society’s ARTfutures 2007, Bloomberg SPACE, London and Dreizhenwei, Vienna. James Ireland is represented by f a projects.