Erika James is a Toronto-based multimedia artist and curator, and also known as street artist NIXO. Her practice includes installation work, sculpture, murals, text, fibre, and community engagement processes. She has exhibited solo shows in notable public galleries such as the McMaster Museum of Art, Harcourt House, Glenhyrst Gallery of Brant, and McIntosh Gallery, and has participated in art festivals and events such as Nuit Blanche, Hamilton Supercrawl, Animating Our Waterfront, and Main Squared. James has a permanent public art installation of integrated sculptures at the Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital. She is the co-founder and co-director of the Open Field Collective; a community engaged venture that creates and presents art in unique public spaces.
My work seeks to provide fun and interactive experiences by instilling a sense of playful curiosity in an audience. I enjoy working with the idea that art has the ability to animate our senses and I like to create ambient environments that draw out this potential for engagement. In my Strange Growth series at Nuit Blanche, three giant concrete “chia pets” sprouted non-genetically modified wheat grass which the public relished in eating. Another interactive installation, Flotilla, drew the audience into a darkened gallery where sixteen translucent polyurethane sculptures pulsed with internal lights, erupting into hisses and whispers as you approach them. My playful 3-D textile and inflatable works are compelling to touch, and the audience is delighted when the pieces come to life with sounds under their fingertips. My murals similarly endeavour to create environments of curious shapes and form, leaving an audience with a pleasant sense of mystery.
Painting, Aerosol, Stencil Art, Textile Art, Installation Art
© 2019 The PATCH (Public Art Through Construction Hoarding) Project - all images are copyrighted by the artist, unless otherwise noted