James Clar


presented by Blythe Projects

Born 1979 in Wisconsin, USA

James Clar fuses technology and popular culture to explore how and why people interact, behave and communicate and the effect on the individual and society. His works often control and manipulate light—the common element of all visual mediums. Transcending traditional rules and assumptions, Clar employs innovative materials and systems to access new visual, emotional and perceptual opportunities. His works may startle with intimacy, or hint at danger; they may throw doubt into institutional architectures we take for granted. Clar builds upon accepted behavior patterns, playing with the unspoken boundaries that dictate the proper distance between artwork and audience. He jolts us out of complacent assumptions by allowing the art object to initiate conversations and sometimes even answer back.


As an American living in Dubai since 2007, Clar’s recent work also explores deeper conceptual themes of nationalism and the media’s effect on popular culture—often analyzing the discrepancies between information relayed by Western media and Middle Eastern media sources.

James Clar, Boom, 2011, fluorescent lights, acrylic tubes & light filters, 33 x 47 inches, edition of 5 + 2 APs
James Clar, Ball and Chain, 2010, car headlights, chain & LED lights, 35 x 35 x 35 inches, edition of 3 + 1 AP
James Clar, Turbulence, 2011, Industrial fan, lightbulb & wire, dimensions variable
James Clar, Untitled (Magnetic Field), 2011, fluorescent tube lights, color filters & steel tube, 86 inches in diameter
James Clar, A Moment Defined By a Point and a Line, 2010, acrylic and CCFLs (cold cathode fluorescent lamps), 16 ½ x 12 x 8 inches each, edition of 3 + 1 AP