JP Rakehorn

Members - Artists


My work is about the union of opposites. Order and chaos. Life, or creation, and death, or destruction and decay. Finely crafted and accidental, perfect and imperfect, it uses the pull between the two, with sex as its theme.

I draw and paint sexual images because I've had an equal obsession with sex and drawing, since I was a child. And, what better theme to make pictures of? Manís been making sexual images for thousands of years; itís only recently that heís not had to veil it in allegory.

My pictures are more the result of not painting what I donít like than painting what I do. The result of a process of exclusion as much as addition. I start them by sitting down with a surface and giving myself a problem. Itís the solving of the problem that makes the picture.

I like the idea of chance entering the images I make. Itís like handing part of the process to something outside of myself, something bigger. Itís all part of that union of opposites, in this case, chaos and order: I like the way that things break down at the edges of knowledge. How, no matter how ordered you try to make things, chaos is always there, nibbling at the edges. How, no matter how chaotic, random and chance-filled the universe seems to be, some kind of structure always appears. Instead of trying to banish the chaos, I try to let it have its place.

I try to make pictures that stand up as objects in themselves, without needing lengthy or esoteric explanations. But, thatís not to say that theyíre all surface. I likes unfinished work, too. For me, a highly finished picture or sculpture is somehow dead. Sketches, workings, they retain a sense of potential, of life.

I often make my work from found paper, from unsound or unusual materials, or from things I know will slowly decay. Itís part of leaving a picture with some kind of life, some impermanence, or in an unfinished state. I also like the idea of craftsmanship, which feeds into my art work from my day-to-day work. It somehow feels more satisfying and real than self-referential, ideas-based work.

Image by Guild of Erotic Artists member JP Rakehorn