James Watkins
Neighbours, Saturday Afternoon
Oil on canvas
180 x 180 cm
$15,000
Relative Size: Neighbours, Saturday Afternoon
Relative size

The foundational theme of Home remains paramount in this new series of works by James Watkins entitled Neighbours. The symbol of home, as a place of heart and hearth, belonging and security was first seen in James' early Red Roof Series. In the following years other architectural forms were introduced such as Memorial Halls and classic Kiwi Villas, and the scale of the works increased . From 2019 a confident exploration of cubism saw James transform a tapestry of brilliantly balanced, toned and shaded cubes of colour into stylish landscapes and still-lifes.

These latest works both echo and expand earlier, familiar themes. Tall, steeple-roofed townhouses speak of urban intimacy and neighbourliness. Whilst the composition is contemporary and bold, this is tempered with a sense of 'across the garden fence,' and softened with plantings of green foliage. A cheerful companionableness is prevalent as the townhouses standing together, yet apart, appear to engage in a visual conversation of form and colour.