• Son of Richard Prince.
  • Born in Philadelphia.
  • Got locked in a freeport, survived by eating dust for a whole month.
  • Hans Ulrich Obrist has said “he is very good at art”
  • Once was on a plane, pilot fell asleep. Had to land plane himself.
  • Friendly.
  • Invented painting.
  • Has never read a book or seen a movie.
  • Has 6 siblings.

or

You walk into a gallery, It is empty,

and there is something terrifying about this empty room. 

      The flat plains that I grew up around always instilled a panic in me. I remember an August, seeing the gold of wheat or the yellow of mustard push against the flat blue of a sky, I remember the emptiness or the weight of a horizon that seemed to rest on shoulders. As a child, every adult was Atlas.

We - you and I together - can work to fill this space. 

We start by thinking about how a person should feel here, how their body would move, 

how they could feel their hand run along the edge of their pants as they walk, how their shoes might tap tap tap the cold concrete floor, and how, when they lean over to look at a tabletop, their shadow might fall on it, obscuring the surface.

We acknowledge, with sincerity, these traces of our visitors. We take a moment to enjoy their presence, to think of history like a ghost or an angel, as something that moves.

I say the visitor should feel loved, they should feel in their body the tragedy and beauty of decay, they should move like a book moves, back and forth in space, suspended, anxious, and excited. 

You say yes, but they should also feel supported, like stones in a bridge. They should feel free, like water under that bridge. And they should breathe calmly like a traveler who crosses that bridge.

I agree, and we set to work.

We lapse into poetics
as prose so often fails


      (and I say that failure is beautiful)


But sometimes one needs to bypass the brain
and hit the gut instead

     (I wrote a poem about love
once, and said something similar.)


I am attracted to the worn concrete of a library’s facade, to the slow death of a book. A cherry petal in spring spiralling to yellow-green grass, I think of life like hiccups. 

When I was a child I dropped a book into the ocean. I dove in after it, alone, from a rocky pier in Massachusetts. The day was overcast, and the ocean a deep blue.

In the water I saw faces in the dust and silt

apophenia happens when we make something from nothing.

I lost the book (I was comforted by the thought of it resting on a cold sandy floor)

I love the authorless and the antagonistic and also the heartfelt gaze of a friend and the words we whisper before we sleep. I am a person who is attracted to beginnings and to failure: I have always enjoyed a fire more than I have the embers.

-----------

I am an artist and writer working in Toronto.

I can be reached at 647-239-4194 or [email protected]

I was born in 1996, in Philadelphia. My last body of work, The Bomb Party or What Goes Up, was shown at Bunker 2 in January of 2018. I am in the process of writing my first book, and I will be participating in the Toronto Art Book Fair this summer. I facilitate a bi-weekly writing workshop, and run a publishing imprint called Successful Press.

CV/Portfolio available upon request.

Select clients include Art Metropole, Bunker 2, Sonya Lee, and No Fun Press.


Little Portugal, Toronto.

647-239-4194

[email protected]


@graysonjames.info

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