edited by Bonnie Jo Stufflebeam
James Rosin has long been a favorite artist of mine. I first discovered his work at a Jupiter House show featuring local teachers and asked him to be part of my Art & Words Show. Since then he’s taken part in the show every year. When I was deciding who to feature for March, James came immediately to mind. On March 31, I’m hosting Spiderweb Salon’s Planet of the Angst Show at Wine Squared (hope to see you all there!), where we’ll be cringing at and celebrating the angst and eagerness of our teenage years. Working in a high school, James has never really gotten away from the angst. But through his art, he’s been able to exorcise it.
Your work has a wonderful surreal quality to it. Where do these images come from?
I rarely conjure up these images in a vacuum. They evolve through a series of experimentations and to some degree my own limitations. I’ll start off by creating a spontaneous organization of textures, values, colors, and shapes, etc. With that I’ll imagine various scenarios, subject matter and content. Then I’ll try to make it conceptually and visually work by fine-tuning it and filling in the missing pieces.
What subjects interest you?
Social Commentary, Humanity, and Pure Design
You're a high school art teacher. How has teaching informed your own work?
Other than the obvious inspiration I get from my students and fellow colleagues in my department, I am constantly immersed in the culture of art, the techniques, the history, and the processes which contribute to my experience. I also address the variety of reasons “why” we make art, which could be anything from decoration to documentation to social commentary. In doing so, my art has also addressed these variables. Looking at my body of work, I’m kind of all over the place and haven’t settled on any particular style, which I find intriguing.
Did you create angsty work as a teenager? If so, what did you learn then that you took into adulthood?
Yes, and still do. I learned I could play out or release my anxiety visually. It essentially gave me the illusion of control over those situations.
What have been some of the most rewarding experiences you've had as an artist?
I loved being able to show my work in a gallery. I certainly like when people appreciate my work. It’s nice to be good at something.
Who are some of your influences?
Growing up it was Dali, Picasso, Norman Rockwall, Degas, and MC Escher. Now, I really appreciate artist who are proactive in their society like Banksy.
Any upcoming shows or projects you'd like to share?
We have the annual Denton High School art show April 5th at the Greater Denton Arts Council from 5-7. The Art & Words show sometime in October in Fort Worth at the Art on the Boulevard.
James Rosin’s work is visceral and original, inspired from the natural world often exploring themes regarding social commentary. His work is composed from a variety of mediums and layers together forming an illustrative and surreal quality. Rosin has been teaching art at Denton High School for ten years.
If you’d like your work to be featured by Spiderweb Salon, send us your work through our submissions page.