James Alexander McKenzie (born 15-08-1994 Harare, Zimbabwe) is a Scottish artist living in Edinburgh. McKenzie’s intuitive practice encompasses painting, verse, collage, sculpture, installation, found objects, prose, spoken word, collaboration and performance. Being presuppositionless to a certain extent and open to possibilities is crucially important to his creative process and spontaneity is essential to his methodology. Both Eastern and Western philosophical and literary influence is at the core of his work. McKenzie playfully explores themes which are often philosophically motivated using an expansive scope of reference material which includes personal experiences. 

McKenzie has exhibited, performed publicly and lead workshops widely in Scotland at galleries including the Royal Scottish Academy, the Scottish National Gallery, Embassy Gallery, generatorPROJECTS, Summerhall and Orkney’s Pier Arts Centre. Among the awards he has been the recipient of are a £5000 bursary from the RSA Residencies for Scotland scheme to undertake a collaborative residency with Liverpool-based artist Daniel O'Dempsey at the Pier Arts Centre, Orkney in 2019, the RSA Carnegie Scholarship for painting for his work in 2018’s RSA New Contemporaries and the James Guthrie Orchar Memorial Art Prize from Dundee University in 2017 for his degree show work. McKenzie is represented in public collections including Orkney’s Pier Arts Centre and Dundee University. He is the founder of Pepsi Collective, a 21-member artist collective comprised of several generations of DJCAD graduate artists. McKenzie graduated from Duncan of Jordanstone with honours first class in 2017.

Contact

mckenzie_james@hotmail.co.uk

Education

2014-2017: Art and Philosophy BA at Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design, Dundee (graduated with honours first class)  

2012-2013: General Foundation at Leith School of Art, Edinburgh

Awards

2019: £5000 bursary from RSA Residencies for Scotland scheme to undertake a residency at the Pier Arts Centre, Orkney to focus on a collaborative project with Daniel O'Dempsey 

2018: RSA New Contemporaries Carnegie Scholarship for painting 

2017: RSA New Contemporaries 2018 Selected Artist  

2017: James Guthrie Orchar Memorial Art Prize, Dundee University 

2012: Robert Patterson Pencil Portrait Award, George Watson’s College 

Selected Exhibition, Performance and Workshops

2021: Tides that Bind, Tides that Break, poetry reading at private view, Aberdour

2021: Farewell My Darlings, theatrical poetry reading with visual art backdrop, St. Margaret's House, Edinburgh

2021: Sum Poems, Volk Gallery, Dundee

2021: The Soapworks Residencies, two day mini-residency and live performance with Hidden Door, Edinburgh

2021:Something’s Brewing…, virtual experimental poetry workshop for MFAstudents of the Royal College of Art, London

2021: Life After Art School, virtual artist talk for students of Gray's School of Art, Aberdeen 

2020: On the Same Boat, G1, St. Margaret's House, Edinburgh

2020: Nobility Pursuit, G16 Exhibition Space, St. Margaret's House, Edinburgh

2020: Beta Blockers, live performance, Forest Café, Edinburgh

2020: Academy Late, launch event for the new RSA Salon membership scheme, Royal Scottish Academy, Edinburgh

2019-20: Alba down to Nippon, OPEN SSA+VAS, Royal Scottish Academy, Edinburgh

2019: Fenris Wolf and Ragnar Thorfinn Act 3, collaborative exhibition with Daniel O'Dempsey, WASPS Studios, Stromness, Orkney

2019: Fenris Wolf and Ragnar Thorfinn Act 2, collaborative performance with Daniel O'Dempsey and Clair Westrop, Stromness Academy, Orkney

2019: Fenris Wolf and Ragnar Thorfinn Act 1, collaborative performance with Daniel O'Dempsey and Eric Linklater, Pier Arts Centre, Stromness, Orkney

2019: Experimental Poetry Workshop, part of Piergroup, The Pier Arts Centre, Stromness, Orkney

2019: Red Lite Radio, podcast with Daniel O'Dempsey, Orkney

2019: PEPSI 2, St. Margaret's House, Edinburgh

2019: invited to perform Baby Jet II at Michael Kay Terrence's The Marks to Prove It private view, Summerhall, Edinburgh

2019: JET BABY, part of Annuale Festival 2019, Heart of Midlothian, Royal Mile, Edinburgh

2019: PEPSI GENESIS, Dock Street Studios, Dundee

2019: The Assassination of Dr. Queso Empanada, SA-LON SUCKERS, Embassy Gallery, Edinburgh

2019: Round One, poetry reading at private view, The Bridewell Studios, Liverpool

2018-19: CONCORD NUDIST, SSA 121st Annual Exhibition, Royal Scottish Academy, Edinburgh

2018: ECSTASY AB INITIO, unauthorized poetry reading, Scottish National Gallery, Edinburgh

2018: Live Music// Jam Session// Poetry ETC, The George Orwell, Dundee

2018: RSA New Contemporaries, Royal Scottish Academy, Edinburgh

2017: RSA Open Exhibition, Royal Scottish Academy

2017: Best of Degree Show, Six Foot Gallery, Glasgow

2017: Annual Art, Design & Architecture Degree Show, Duncan and Jordanstone College of Art and Design, Dundee

2017: Trans-Fixed Live Performance Event, generatorPROJECTS, Dundee

2016: ATTRIBUTES, Room 601, Duncan of Jordanstone

2016: Multi Exhibition, Matthew Entrance Gallery, Duncan of Jordanstone

2016: Art & Philosophy’s First Social Event 16/17, Matthew Entrance Gallery, Duncan of Jordanstone

2015: Culloden Viaduct Exhibition, Culloden Battlefield Centre, Inverness

Publication

2021: Grace and Consistency, self-published pamphlet, Edinburgh

2021: Littoral Magazine Issue 3: Spring Equinox, online magazine

2020: All You Can Eat, collaborative zine curated and edited by  Alex Weir

2019: Alba down to Nippon, self-published zine, Edinburgh

2019: Polemical Zine Issue 11: Social, online zine, Canada

2019: New River Press Yearbook 2018-19, New River Press, Fitrovia, London

2018: The Celestial Midnight Bar, self-published, Edinburgh

2018: Untitled Poetry Collection, self-published, Dundee

2017: Prose Poems, self-published, Dundee

Using Format