Author: Rebecca Cox

James Bates: Sunshine Supershine

We sit down with James Bates to discuss his new prints 'Sunshine Supershine' and his life as an artist. 

James Bates: Sunshine Supershine | Image

Sunshine Supershine

'Sunshine Supershine' is a graphic exploration and celebration of shape colour and movement, celebrating sheer joy, exuberance and ceaseless optimism. There is a lot going on in there, I like to let the images speak for themselves and for people to draw their own conclusions and discover connections and ideas. 

When creating, the images tell you what they want you to do next, very much in the same way when painting, you are merely the ever willing drone-droid slave to the unseen masterful or misressful force of the pixel and brush. Like a million neon demons battering your synapses and eyeballs for their own amusement. Survival of the furthest.

The print is in itself almost alive and feels like it’s moving, and it demanded that I also created an animated digital version to accompany it. I’m always looking at space and movement when image making or painting, for me it’s a fundamental part of the creative process.

James Bates: Sunshine Supershine | Image

What was the inspiration behind Sunshine Supershine?

An amalgamation of sampled and recycled images from my ever evolving archive, there have been many variations of this piece on the way, but it’s only with distance that you can look back again and see the value, character and individuality.

Do you see this work as a continuation of previous work or a series, or a new departure in your practice?

A bit of both really, partly a collage in a way - sampling and revisiting my own work and re working to create something unique and new from discarded and hand finished pieces. Creating new ideas by looking at old ideas in a new way. 

Which artists inspire you, or you admire?

Too many to list, I am constantly discovering new inspiring artists and continue to be amazed at new discoveries.

James Bates: Sunshine Supershine | Image

When did you know you wanted to pursue a life in art?

Probably drawing my own comics or watching Terry Gilliam animations as a child.

What is your earliest art memory?

Probably my parents artworks (my dads abstract paintings and my mums illustrations for greeting cards and painting animation cells), or graphics and illustrations in books, comics and packaging and record sleeves. I found out recently the steel-pipe playground outside Habitat in Wallingford in the 1970’s was actually an Eduardo Paolozzi sculpture (Suwasa). Me and my brothers would spend hours climbing them, weirdly I recently found a grainy old catalogue photo of them with what I’m convinced is us 3 playing on them.

What’s your favourite creative work (artwork, music, play, film, etc)

There’s far too much goodness out there for one thing to get the prize.

What’s next? Your next project, hobby, goal in your career

We’re building a print studio, but it’s a very long term project, so a time machine and a lottery win would be handy with that, exploration into the world of NFT’s and more painting, painting big things, I’m happy to coexist between analogue and digital.

To see James Bates' full collection, click here! 


James Bates: Sunshine Supershine | Image


Wobbly by Erwin Wurm
Wobbly £7,650
Ivy Mike by Robert Longo
Ivy Mike £14,280

Robert Longo


Limited edition of 15

Forest of Doxa by Robert Longo
Balloon Animals I Matching Set by Jeff Koons
Balloon Animals I Matching Set £45,900

Jeff Koons


Limited edition of 999

Diamond (Blue) by Jeff Koons
"Coca Cola" Glass Vase £4,250

Ai Weiwei


Limited edition of 300

Mel Ferrer's Nightmare (Grey With Flowers) by Pure Evil
Mel Ferrer's Nightmare (Grey With Flowers) £1,500

Pure Evil


Limited edition of AP

The Wild Swim from £120

Oli Mumby

Various sizes

Off You Pop by Louise Nordh
Off You Pop £95

Louise Nordh

35 x 35cm

Limited edition of 30

Moving Forms by Mr Penfold
Moving Forms £165

Mr Penfold

26 x 30cm

Limited edition of 15

Inside Mickey's Heart from £150

Angel London

Various sizes

Navy Boy £175

Charlie Evaristo-Boyce

50 x 70cm

Limited edition of 25

I Will Bite from £135

Mathilda Mai

Various sizes

Italian Summer by SODA
Italian Summer £125


42 x 29.7cm

Limited edition of 40

Let's Get It On £595

Linda Charles

56 x 76cm

Limited edition of 45

Wash the Blues Away by Charlie Haydn Taylor
Wash the Blues Away from £150

Charlie Haydn Taylor

Various sizes

Inhale £175

Joe Webb

50 x 70cm

Limited edition of 30

Roarsome - Green by And Wot
Roarsome - Green £195

And Wot

50 x 70cm

Limited edition of 2

Fresh £200

Hannah Adamaszek

60 x 75.5cm

Limited edition of 15

Destroy the Patriarchy Not the Planet (Mini) £400

Hannah Shillito

27.9 x 21cm

Limited edition of 20

Scratchin' Cats (Blue) £150

The Cameron Twins

33 x 36cm

Limited edition of 20

Fast Dog £95

Gavin Dobson

50 x 70cm

Limited edition of 100

In The Sky With Stars £195

Charlie Evaristo-Boyce

70 x 100cm

Limited edition of 16

Gamebuoy by Nick Chaffe
Gamebuoy £100

Nick Chaffe

29.7 x 42cm

Limited edition of 50

Seascape W £300

Newton Blades

50 x 30cm

Limited edition of 100