James Allan

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Painting is a performative, theatrical practice and in my case it's a small, easel sized space where I can think about the formal, psychological and conceptual problems associated with creating a painting within a post-exhausted practice.

I was raised in a small town in Ontario and moved to Toronto to attend Ontario College of Art. After graduating I worked primarily in industrial settings before joining the imaging section in the conservation department of the Archives of Ontario. For the past 15 years I've lived in Oxford, UK and am currently the Head of Imaging Services at the Bodleian Library.

My industrial experience was an education in process, materials and construction on a large scale. My work in the archives and library feeds an affection for primary documents and foregrounds the strengths and weakness in attempting to replicate an original experience.