James Steventon is an artist, writer, and runner, based in Northamptonshire. James is Director of Fermynwoods Contemporary Art, Senior Lecturer (Foundation) at The School of Art, Architecture and Design at London Metropolitan University, and External Examiner, Contemporary Art Practice, Gray’s School of Art, Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen.
In 2021 James was nominated as a Fellow of the RSA in recognition of his support of young contemporary artists through his work at Fermynwoods Contemporary Art, his championship of innovative, emerging and impactful arts practice, and his participation in training and advocacy work through Engage as Digital Special Interest Representative.
James’ artistic practice involves methods of inhabiting the fleeting mental state of operation loosely defined by Csikszentmihalyi as ‘Flow’. Strategies for achieving this include both endurance running and endurance drawing. That the intention for each strategy is the same, the methods are considered alike: running is drawing.
This can manifest itself as either public or private performance, where “Matter has been transformed into energy and time motion,” (Lucy Lippard: February 1968) or as the residue of performance in the form of an autotelic object. In each case this can be driven by both corporeal physicality and new technology, often from the perspective of the heart as a sensory organ.
In addition to a running-based performance at the University of Reading’s Journeys Across Media Conference: The Body and the Digital, he has run five kilometres inside a bank vault, 100 miles in 24 hours, plus 26 miles dressed as an eighteenth-century Running Footman celebrated in Roger Robinson’s Running Throughout Time: The Greatest Running Stories Ever Told (Mayer & Mayer: 2022).