Myths and misinformation have troubled ‘voice hearing’ citizens since the 19th
Century in the UK and other parts of the Western World. James Paddock uses video
and installation artwork to challenge historic societal mistruths along with today’s
stigma in relation to this mental health condition. People journeying though life with
the condition can be thoughtful by nature, enabling voice hearers to question
existence with ease in many circumstances.
Historically creative output does not correlate with how voice hearers are seen today.
We know Sir Isaac Newton (scientist), Buddy Bolden (inventor of jazz), Vaslav
Nijinsky (ballet dancer and choreographer) and John Nash (Nobel Prize winning
Mathematician) journeyed similar existences and lived with voices. All being labelled
with what the medical profession would call ‘Schizophrenia’.
Today, James fuses the surreal nature of schizophrenia/voice hearing with everyday
narratives about the lives of people living in the UK and other western countries. His
investigations continue with self-reflection and research. Beginning with a seed of an
idea his studio practice involves collaborative working with a team of ethical
filmmakers, producers, artists/creatives and actors to realise his work.
James’ early experiences of life led to a challenging journey through the education
system, not beginning his studies in earnest until his early twenties. By that time
James had built up a wealth of unconventional experiences which in part informs his
Selected exhibition history includes: Development of Mirrored to the Core. The
Making Room Residency ‘a space’ arts, Southampton UK (2022); PYLON (solo
show), A-side B-side Gallery, London, UK (2019); Loss and Lucidity (The Lost and Found), curated by Diana Ali, Santora Space205, Santa Ana, California, USA, also
toured to Fabrica Braco de Prata and the Appleton in Lisbon, Portugal (2018) and
Blinds (solo Show), Blackbox Project Space, UCA Farnham, UK (2017). James
Paddock’s exhibitions and projects have been repeatedly funded by Arts Council
England since 2017.
1996-99 Cardiff School of Art and Design, B.A. Fine Arts, 2:1 (Hons)
1995-96 Winchester School of Art, Foundation Diploma
2022 – 2023 Peer Critiquing Sessions for Artquest (University of the Arts London)
2016 - present, Co-writing courses and co-facilitating courses with NHS, Mental Health Recovery College
Exhibitions/ Projects/ Events/ Residencies