James Jarvis

© Courtesy of James Jarvis and cadet capela

Born in 1970, London, UK
Lives and works in London, UK
James Jarvis is an artist and visual philosopher from London whose work encompasses cartoons, objects, comics, graphic design, printmaking and moving image. His practice concerns drawing, philosophy, alternate realities, minimalism and skateboarding.

Jarvis was born in London in 1970, and studied at the University of Brighton and the Royal College of Art, graduating in 1995. Jarvis’ first commissioned work was for the influential London skate shop Slam City Skates. He has worked as a commercial artist for clients worldwide, including Coca-Cola, Ikea, Nike and UNIQLO. In 1998, Jarvis designed the iconic character toy, Martin, for the cult fashion brand Silas. He enjoyed a long collaboration with Silas which helped introduce him to a worldwide audience, notably in Japan. In 2000, Jarvis visited Japan for a solo exhibition, World of Pain, at the PARCO galleries in Tokyo, Hiroshima and Nagoya. In Japan Jarvis has designed the mascot for Toto sports lottery. From 2003 to 2013, Jarvis worked on his own brand, Amos, in partnership with Silas’ co-director Russell Waterman. For Amos, Jarvis created over 100 character toys, as well as graphics, comic strips, books, exhibitions, a music festival and a crazy-golf hole.

​Jarvis has worked on two notable moving image projects in collaboration with Richard Kenworthy. In 2008 they made the short film, Onwards, and in 2012 they made an ident, Brodown, for MTV. More recently, Jarvis has concentrated on a simpler, reductive, drawing-based approach to his work, with solo exhibitions in London, Paris, Hong Kong and Tokyo. ​Jarvis lives with his partner and two children in south London.

Curriculum vitae

Solo and two-person exhibitions
  • 2022
    hello bauhaus, PARCO Museum Tokyo, JP
  • 2021
    Découpages, capela, Paris, FR
  • 2020
    Transcendental Idealism, Nanzuka, Tokyo, JP
  • 2019
    Throw-Ups, Nanzuka, Tokyo, JP
  • Ceci n’est pas un dessin, c’est une situation, cadet capela, Paris, FR
  • 2018
    The Waste Man, AishoNanzuka, Hong Kong, HK
  • 2015
    No More Negative Space, HHH Gallery, Tokyo, JP
  • 2014
    Spheric Dialogues, Colette, Paris, FR
  • 2013
    Objects In Space, Beach London Gallery, London, GB
  • 2012
    Amos Generic Character Brand Store, Gallery Common, Tokyo, JP
  • Fifty-Two Spheres, Beach London Gallery, London, GB
  • 2011
    Installation, The Standard, New York, NY, US
  • 2006
    Drawings, Meltdown Comics, Los Angeles, CA, US
  • 2001
    World of Pain, PARCO Gallery, Nagoya, JP
  • 2000
    World of Pain, PARCO Gallery, Tokyo, JP
  • 1999
    In My Room, Colette, Paris, FR
Group exhibitions
  • 2020
    Global Pop Underground, curated by Nanzuka, PARCO Museum, Tokyo, JP
  • 2019
    Group Show, cadet capela, Montpellier, FR
  • 2015
    Mapping the City, Somerset House, London, GB
  • 2007
    Festival International de la Bande Dessinée, Angoulême, FR
  • 2004
    Beautiful Losers, CAC, Cincinnati, OH, US
  • 2003
    Where Is Silas?, PARCO Museum, Tokyo, JP
  • 2002
    This is me, with Mike Milles, Ed Templeton, Imai Toonz, Akira Somekawa, Sugiyama Hiro and others , showcased in London, New York, Los Angeles, Tokyo, and Paris
  • 2001
    Pot o’Gold 2, with Chris Johanson and Todd James, PAM Gallery Australia, Perks, AU
  • JAM: London-Tokyo, Barbican Gallery, London, GB
  • 1999
    Slipstream, CCA, Glasgow, GB
  • Musée des Arts Décoratifs, Paris, FR
  • Design Museum, London, GB
  • MIMA (Millennium Iconoclast Museum of Art), Brussels, BE
  • 2015
    No More Negative Space, HHH, Tokyo, JP
  • 2014
    Spheric Dialogues, Nieves, Zurich, CH
  • 2013
    De Architectura, EPFL, Lausanne, CH
  • 2011
    Coloring Book, Nieves, Zurich, CH
  • De Profundis, PictureBox, New York, NY, US
  • 2010
    Car Parks, Nieves, Zurich, CH
  • The Wisdom of Caleb, Amos, London, GB
  • 2007
    Selected Drawings, Amos, London, GB
  • Yodzine, Amos, London, GB
  • 2006
    Vortigern’s Machine and the Great Sage of Wisdom, Amos, London, GB
  • 2002
    James Jarvis Drawings, Relax Book, Tokyo, JP
  • 2001
    Lars!, Silas, London, GB
  • 2000
    World of Pain, SH, Silas, London, GB
  • 1995
    Royal College of Art
  • 1993
    University of Brighton
  • 1990
    Chelsea College of Art