James Beckett (b. 1977, Harare, Zimbabwe) graduated from the Technikon-Natal, Durban South Africa, after which he took part in a two-year residency in the Rijksakademie Van Beeldende Kunsten, Amsterdam.
Coming from a background of installation and sound, Beckett has been involved in a form of research in various subjects, building on a surface layer across various media. Specific areas of the industrial revolution have played muse; such as the evolution of Limburgerhof a BASF-company specialized in fertilizers and the cultural implications of vacuum tubes for the Dutch firm Philips.
Beckett’s practice typically explores minor histories and is concerned with industrial development (and its subsequent demise). It is a process of investigation that is as much physical as it is biographical.
Recent shows include: Now is the Time, Wuzhen; Revolutionize!, Mystetski Arsenal, Kyiv, 1st Riga Biennial; The World is Flat, MCAD, Manila; Witness, 1st Karachi Biennale; Utopia/Dystopia, MAAT, Lisbon; 5th Thessaloniki Biennale; 56th Venice Biennale, Belgian Pavilion. Published Monographs include: TWAAS/Koenig books and Kehrer Verlag.
Beckett was resident at the Rijksakademie (2001-2002) after which he won the Prix de Rome for Art in Public Space. Further residencies includes: ISCP, NYC (upcoming); FLACC, Genk; Wysing, Cambridge; Centre International Des Recollets, Paris.
He was awarded the Prix De Rome (NL) in 2003. He is represented in the collections of Centre Pompidou, Paris (FR), Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam (NL), Valkhof Nijmegen (NL) and Zeeuws Museum Middelburg (NL) among others.
For a recent interview in Art Territory click here