The inspiration for the Cooperage series comes from the tradition of hand-making wooden staved barrels for aging wines. The repeating circular motif expresses the artist’s interest in the form of the cask, while grand sweeping arcs suggest its girth, and provides dimensional qualities. Selecting a palette of deep, rich browns, with variegated blonds and rusts, represents the wood, smoke and fire used in crafting the barrel.
James Frey began taking and developing his own photos at the age of 12. Three years later, he began working full-time as a newspaper photojournalist and by the age of sixteen became the youngest recipient to receive an award from the California newspaper association for his work. He continued to work as a photojournalist in order to pay his way through college. In his late twenties, Frey turned to painting and developed a passion for abstract expressionist works. His paintings of rich, deep hues and vibrant contrast create a powerful sense of color, shape, and energy. In order to create a greater tactile quality, at times he’ll incorporate vineyard cuttings, pinot noir skins and vineyard soil into a piece.
His paintings have been sold to collectors throughout North America. He also has work hanging in Great Britain, France, Sweden, Central America and Brazil.