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Hyperrealism and Improvisation

28 August, 2018 - 8 September, 2018

28 August – 8 September 2018

Tuesday – Friday 11am to 5pm,
Saturday 12pm to 4pm
admission: Free

There is no one way in creativity. Different ways not only serve different purposes, they can inform one another.

Hyperrealism and Improvisation are two ways artist James Yuncken has been working the last years. Two quite different modes of expression fit for different purposes.

Hyperrealism for the series of landscape paintings from a trip along the Oodnadatta Track.

Hyperrealism denotes a realistic treatment of a scene, an inventory of detail, but at the same time something more, an attempt to give a sense of the experience of the place – or at least his experience of it: The vastness, the sense of geological time, of grand and overwhelming natural forces slowly and inexorably at work, the struggle facing life in an extreme environment.

It’s a landscape shaped by heat and dryness, also by water that now and again inundates it and, because of its flatness, floods all over, turns the earth soft and erodes it.

The Improvisations are drawings done in Yuncken’s residency at St Vincent’s Hospital.

That began almost at the same time as his trip along the Oodnadatta Track. In his once-weekly visits to St Vincent’s Caritas Christi studios, Yuncken would attempt to fill as many sheets of paper as quickly and spontaneously as he could.

Perhaps a respite from the paintings determined by the world without, these are genuine improvisations, determined by the world within. No prior plan, only the spontaneous expression of a state of mind. The game was to try to make each mark lively and interesting and then the next likewise in relation to the marks gone down before. If a subject matter arose along the way, then good. If not, no matter.

“There is no one way in creativity. Different ways not only serve different purposes, they can inform one another. Operating these two modes in parallel has, I believe, made me better at both.”

James Yuncken is a Melbourne based artist, working from a studio on Smith Street in Fitzroy.

James has exhibited frequently in Melbourne and Canberra since 1989.



2018                Improvisations, St Vincent’s Residency: Drawings from Caritas Christi, St Vincent’s Gallery, Fitzroy

2017                Represented 45 at 45, fortyfivedownstairs, Melbourne

2015                The Drawing Room, Prints, Drawings and Bas Relief, fortyfivedownstairs, Melbourne

2014                Places Nearby, More Inner Melbourne fortyfivedownstairs, Melbourne

2012                Walking to Work, Melbourne, Inner East fortyfivedownstairs, Melbourne

2011                Vox Pix, Voices and Images Together Centre for Theology and Ministry, Parkville

2010                Travelling North, Journey to Cape York fortyfivedownstairs, Melbourne

2008                Abstraction and Space, fortyfivedownstairs, Melbourne

2005                Formal Considerations, 257 Church St, Richmond and On-line

2003                Sense of Place, SPAN Galleries, Melbourne

2001                Presence/Absence, SPAN Galleries, Melbourne

2000                Represented 8 x 8, Roar Studios, Fitzroy

1999                Represented 8 x 8, Roar Studios, Fitzroy

1998                Represented 3rd Annual Summer Show, Galerie helengory, Richmond

1997                First Steps, Galerie helengory, Richmond

1996                Represented A Four Art 19 ninety-six, Westspace

1995                Studio Landscape Exhibition, Smith Street Studio, Fitzroy

1993                Represented Swan Hill Print and Drawing Show

1992                Represented Studio One’s ’92 Pressing Annual Show, Spiral Arm Gallery, Canberra

1990                Represented Sun, Smoke and Steel, Studio One touring exhibition Canberra, Sydney, Newcastle

1989                Images in Different Genres, Dorette’s Bistro, Canberra


28 August, 2018
8 September, 2018
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fortyfivedownstairs gallery
45 Flinders Lane
Melbourne, Victoria 3000 Australia
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03 9662 9966
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03 9662 9966


James Yuncken
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