James Christensen’s paintings range from straightforward portraits to fantasy tinged depictions of angels and Renaissance ladies to phantasmic tableaux of fantasy subjects that look as though the books in a children’s library had been run through a fan and reassembled by a cross-eyed surrealist.
Christensen seems to swim in a rich sea of influences, from medieval, Renaissance and baroque art to Golden Age illustrators like Arthur Rackham, Edmund Dulac, Kay Neilsen, John Bauer, and Gustaf Tenggren. You can even see suggestions of the obsessively detailed fairy paintings of Richard Dadd.
At his most expansive, Christensen’s wonderfully detailed and brightly garbed fantasy world denizens parade across lavishly textured landscapes, awash in saturated colors, sprinkled with luminescent details, carrying with them a trove of references to literature and folklore.
Christensen was born in California and studied at Brigham Young University and UCLA. His work has been featured in a number of publications and books, including Voyage of the Basset, A Shakespeare Sketchbook, Rhymes & Reasons, A Journey of the Imagination: The Art of James Christensen and James Christensen: The Greenwich Workshop’s New Century Artists Series.
I don’t know if the artist has an “official” site; jameschristensen.com is associated with the Jerry W. Horn Gallery, and offers original art as well as reproductions. Unfortunately the images are small and the site is poorly organized, but it shows a broad range of Christensen’s work and styles.
Larger images can be found at the Greenwich Workshop’s online gallery, B&R Gallery and Swoyer’s Fine Art.
One of the best pages for a quick overview of his fantasy themed work is this unofficial page on 2photo.ru. I’ve listed other resources below.
[Via Monster Brains]
jameschristensen.com (Jerry Horn Gallery)
Swoyer's Fine Art
Springville Art Museum
5 Replies to “James C. Christensen”
Charles Bragg should surely be noted as a significant influence.
Thanks for this. He is a truly great teacher and a great man. James’ work has influenced many artists over the years and has had impact on a lot of lives.
WOW these are amazing, I’m loving James C. Christensen’s work the colours are so vibrate and the attention to detail is off the wall, I could look at these for hours and still find something new in the pictures. FANTASTIC
Christensen is a true master. Btw, you forgot to mention his latest book “Men and Angels”.
Vale James C. Christensen
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