James Drinkwater

I LOVE YOU TO PIECES AND BACK TOGETHER AGAIN

12 September — 15 September 2019

Born 1983
Lives and works in Newcastle

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Represented by nanda\hobbs

Representing Nanda\Hobbs at 

SYDNEY CONTEMPORARY
12 – 15 September, 2019
Carriageworks
124 Wilson Street
Eveleigh NSW  2015
STAND D05

I LOVE YOU TO PIECES AND BACK TOGETHER AGAIN

As I stand in the artist’s studio, James Drinkwater strides from pallet to canvas with a surgeon’s intent. His paint-stained hand holds the hog hairbrush with an overhand grip— generously layered in oil paint. Initially lunging at the canvas, he pulls back at the last moment before impact, delicately touching the surface. Another mark, another personal totem, comes to life. Then, without hesitation, the artist’s eye is darting to the next moment of focus in the vast landscape of his mind.

It is an experience that I have witnessed many times in the years that James and I have travelled and worked together.  From the heat haze of the Australian desert to the highlands of Tasmania— even the mad intensity of the ‘wet floor’ food courts of Asia— the artist will seemingly file the key images and experiences for a later time when charcoal and paper is present.  His subjects are filtered by osmosis— they become part of him. No matter where Drinkwater stands, there is an intensity to create, and a mission to record life in all its vital beauty. 

James Drinkwater’s love of the experience of living is profoundly infectious. In the evening break for dinner, north coast pippy clams tossed in garlic and white wine and sardines loaded with lemon juice—are thrown together on the studio table with roughly torn bread. It is effortless...food stripped bare to its essential elements— a metaphor for his painting. In his practice, every mark has a reason for being. It is something you become aware of in the time spent with him. Nothing wasted, nothing overlooked— everything eventually resolved.

Drinkwater is undoubtedly passionate— to be otherwise is anathema for him. However, this is a shared experience; he wants us on the journey. I LOVE YOU TO PIECES THEN BACK TOGETHER AGAIN is a body of work that is, in places, introspective. It is about his home in Newcastle— but it is also about his experience of living; of being a son and a father.

He is not telling us anything in particular and certainly, there is no “soapbox” moralising. In fact, titles are ambiguous, imagery delves toward abstraction, text is used— fragmented and, at times, chaotic beyond conventional compositional wisdom. But that’s the point...he is unconventional.  His great gift as an artist is to draw it all together and we, the audience, mature with the paintings— our lives enrich our understanding of the paintings. This is the essential element— Drinkwater delivers the jump-off point for the audience to embrace our own history and delve into the stories of our own lives— our fragmented memories of childhood, the moments that made us who we are.  And in doing so, he reminds us of what a gift it is to live and love— in a world where so many struggle to do both.

Ralph Hobbs
August, 2019

Sydney Contemporary – Opening Hours
VIP Preview (VIP Pass only)

Wednesday 11 September, 4pm - 8pm

Opening Night
Thursday 12 September, 5pm - 9pm

General Opening Hours
Thursday 12 September, 12noon - 5pm
Friday 13 September, 12noon - 8pm
Saturday 14 September, 11am - 6pm
Sunday 15 September, 11am - 6pm

\ Exhibition featured works

James Drinkwater

A Series of Letters 1

2019 \ Oil on canvas \ 101 x 122cm

SOLD

James Drinkwater

A Series of Letters 2

2019 \ Oil on canvas \ 101 x 122cm

SOLD

James Drinkwater

A Series of Letters 3

2019 \ Oil on canvas \ 101 x 122cm

SOLD

James Drinkwater

A Series of Letters 4

2019 \ Oil on canvas \ 101 x 122cm

SOLD

James Drinkwater

Black Boot Polish! Fire Engine Red! Sun Yellow Gold! Racing Car Green

2019 \ Oil and enamel on canvas \ 200 x 160cm

SOLD

James Drinkwater

Boy Hiding Behind a Painting of Flowers

2019 \ Oil on canvas \ 102 x 76cm

SOLD

James Drinkwater

Customs House And Her Working Harbour

2019 \ Oil and enamel on canvas \ 200 x 160cm

James Drinkwater

Daddy!!! How Does That Tug Pull The Long Heavy Bulker

2019 \ Oil and enamel on canvas \ 200 x 160cm

James Drinkwater

Flotto Laura

2019 \ Oil and enamel on canvas \ 200 x 160cm

SOLD

James Drinkwater

Flounder on a Round Table

2019 \ Oil on hardboard \ 62cm diameter

SOLD

James Drinkwater

Girl With Skipping Rope and Industry

2019 \ Oil and enamel on canvas \ 200 x 160cm

SOLD

James Drinkwater

Girl in Cherry Patterned Pyjamas (Study)

2019 \ Oil on hardboard \ 30 x 20cm

SOLD

James Drinkwater

Girl walking on piano keys

2019 \ Oil and enamel on canvas \ 200 x 160cm

SOLD

James Drinkwater

Girls in Cherry Patterned Pyjamas

2019 \ Oil on canvas \ 62 x 51cm

SOLD

James Drinkwater

I Go In De Meedle

2019 \ Oil on canvas \ 76 x 102cm

James Drinkwater

I Go In De Meedle 2

2019 \ Oil on canvas \ 76 x 102cm

James Drinkwater

I Go In De Meedle 3

2019 \ Oil on canvas \ 76 x 102cm

James Drinkwater

In Bed With Sea Urchin

2019 \ Oil and enamel on canvas \ 80 x 140cm

SOLD

James Drinkwater

Lane Cat with Sardine

2019 \ Oil on canvas \ 76 x 102cm

SOLD

James Drinkwater

Lane Cat with Sardine 2

2019 \ Oil on canvas \ 76 x 102cm

James Drinkwater

Little White Boots

2019 \ Oil on canvas \ 76 x 102cm

SOLD

James Drinkwater

Notes from the Sea Monster with No Fins I

2019 \ Slip cast earthenware underglazes and oxide \ 55cm Diametre

SOLD

James Drinkwater

Notes from the Sea Monster with No Fins II

2019 \ Slip cast earthenware, underglazes and oxide \ 40 x 54cm

James Drinkwater

Notes from the Sea Monster with No Fins III

2019 \ Slip cast earthenware, underglazes and oxide \ 55cm diametre

James Drinkwater

Notes from the Sea Monster with No Fins IV

2019 \ Slip cast earthenware, underglazes and oxide \ 40 x 54cm

James Drinkwater

Notes from the Sea Monster with No Fins IX

2019 \ Slip cast earthenware, underglazes and oxide \ 55cm diametre

SOLD

James Drinkwater

Notes from the Sea Monster with No Fins VI

2019 \ Slip cast earthenware, underglazes and oxide \ 39 x 50cm

James Drinkwater

Notes from the Sea Monster with No Fins VII

2019 \ Slip cast earthenware, underglazes and oxide \ 55cm diametre

James Drinkwater

Notes from the Sea Monster with No Fins VIII

2019 \ Slip cast earthenware, underglazes and oxide \ 55cm diametre

James Drinkwater

Notes from the Sea Monster with No Fins X

2019 \ Slip cast earthenware, underglazes and oxide \ 55cm diametre

James Drinkwater

Ocean Face S.M.S.S.

2019 \ 52 x 31 x 31cm \ Edition of 8

James Drinkwater

Reading Books to the Rosey Cheeks

2019 \ Oil on canvas \ 60 x 91cm

SOLD

James Drinkwater

Stella Maris

2019 \ Oil on canvas \ 200 x 160cm

James Drinkwater

The Canoe Pool

2019 \ Oil on canvas \ 60 x 70cm

SOLD

James Drinkwater

The First Bout

2019 \ Oil on canvas \ 240 x 180cm

SOLD

James Drinkwater

The Jazz Band After the Exhibition

2019 \ Oil and enamel on canvas \ 140 x 200cm

SOLD

James Drinkwater

The Magnificent Life of Nevia Consalvo

2019 \ Oil on canvas \ 200 x 160cm

\ Other exhibitions

Dee Smart

A Synopsis of Love

21 November — 14 December 2019

Jonathan Dalton

The Immoral Symmetry

21 November — 14 December 2019

Mehwish Iqbal

The Distance Between Us

31 October — 16 November 2019

Contact Us

to find out more about I LOVE YOU TO PIECES AND BACK TOGETHER AGAIN.

12 - 14 Meagher Street Chippendale, NSW 2008
Opening Hours
9am - 5pm Monday to Friday 11am - 4pm Saturday