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Habitually Chic Artist: James Nares

by habituallychic

09 . 19 . 07

I think I mentioned once before that my study of art history has left me with a pretty good photographic memory. I think it was all that memorizing for compare and contrast exams. So this is probably the reason that I kept noticing very similar artwork in the homes profiled in quite a few magazine spreads. Turns out the man behind these beautiful paintings is James Nares, a New York based London-born artist who uses calligraphy brushes that he makes himself to create very unique and original art using only one continuous brushstroke. You can see him in action in the photo below.

Each stroke has a life of its own. Nares says: “It’s a fine balance between design and the thing making itself happen. The stroke has to have complete precision to work. Sometimes I lose it on the exit. You can’t fudge it. It ruins the whole thing.” The resulting figures are almost always contained within the rectangle. “It’s less of a window if I keep it within the confines of the canvas, but there’s almost always a drip that’s an umbilical cord.”

I love the fact that no two will ever be the same no matter how similar they look. And I think you will agree that they look pretty fabulous in the homes below.

John Barrett’s apartment from July/August 2007 ELLE Decor

Todd Romano’s Apartment from September 2005 ELLE Decor
Josie Natori’s Apartment from October 2007 ELLE Decor

Photo by Simon Upton from march 2007 House & Garden

Comments Closed

  1. Anonymous September 19, 2007 | 8:21 pm

    I love how the eye gets drawn to the bold blue brushstroke at the end of the hallway in the last photograph,there’s hardly any colour in the halway,the wonderful classic pattern of the marble floor plays another part in pulling the eye towards the painitng.

    Well found!I wonder if James Nares will be exibiting his work somewhere in Europe in the near future,I will have to check it out!

    RJH dl H

  2. Habitually Chic September 19, 2007 | 8:42 pm

    I’m not sure about Europe. He had a show in LA this past July but I think he is represented by the Paul Kasmin Gallery in New York. They might know. I wish I knew the prices. I love the little one in Todd Romano’s apartment!

  3. Brilliant Asylum September 20, 2007 | 2:18 pm

    After seeing the painting in your post yesterday, I went back through my stack of Elle Decor to find the painting in the John Barrett apartment. I think his work is wonderfully dynamic. Thanks for posting more information about him!

  4. Jane Flanagan September 20, 2007 | 3:30 pm

    I had a similarly gushing James Nares post last month. http://seenandsaid.blogspot.com/2007/08/james-nares.html Now I keep seeing him everywhere! I just love this artwork and would murder to get my hands on one! You’ve been warned 😉

  5. Habitually Chic September 20, 2007 | 4:02 pm

    Jane, thanks for stopping by. Great minds think alike!

  6. Habitually Chic September 20, 2007 | 4:02 pm

    BA, I’m so glad you like his work too! I love the fact that it looks like a cross between modern art and Asian calligraphy. It’s so different than what anyone else is doing.

  7. ALL THE BEST September 20, 2007 | 4:12 pm

    I am in LOVE with his art work! Great post HC!!

  8. Mrs. Blandings September 20, 2007 | 4:18 pm

    Thanks for pointing this out – his work is very dynamic – nice to see a layout with something other than a Damian Hirst – not that I have anything against him.

  9. Habitually Chic September 20, 2007 | 4:35 pm

    Ronda, thanks for the kind words. His art really is fabulous!

  10. Habitually Chic September 20, 2007 | 4:46 pm

    Mrs. Blandings, I appreciate all art no matter how crazy it is but some is more liveable than others 😉

  11. Dani September 21, 2007 | 6:52 pm

    I didn’t know this artist but his work is really nice. And i love the pics you posted!

  12. franki durbin September 21, 2007 | 7:39 pm

    funny you say that… I always felt like I was cheating in art history. Show me something enough times and I remember it. It seemed unfair to everyone else that they couldn’t take pictures with their minds. Glad to know I’m not alone!

    Okay.. on to this fab painter. GREAT eye. I like how timeless his pieces are. Modern, but with a nod to classical. Love the burst of orange ( I adore energetic orange so much). I’ll have to add him to my list of artists to collect.


  13. Habitually Chic September 21, 2007 | 7:52 pm

    Franki, so great that we both have photographic memories. Art History was so easy for me, I barely had to study. It was great!

    I love the orange ones too! Such a great pop of color to have in your home. Glad you like them!