Born in the suburbs of Los Angeles in 1969, Cameron Jamie’s drawings, films and photographs explore the dark underbelly of the American dream – the way that primal parts of the psyche persistently express themselves, even in the most modern of settings.
Over the past decade Jamie has made a number of films which show social groups performing activities in which violent and pathological urges find expression in different kinds of communal rites and rituals, carnivalesque celebrations and ceremonies.
The black and white film BB explored the phenomenon of backyard wrestling in Los Angeles. Together with two subsequent films commissioned by Artangel, Spook House and Kranky Klaus, the films are normally projected alongside live performance by the west coast slung band (the) Melvins. Exquisite Mayhem, a book made with Mike Kelley, was published to acclaim in 2001.
A subsequent film work JO (2004) documents a French pageant and extreme right-wing rally, both held in honour of Joan of Arc, before concluding at a New York hot dog eating contest – played out entirely in reverse. The music for this film is performed live by the Japanese musician Keijo Haino. His most recent film Massage the History (2007-2009) shows the extraordinary choreographic moves of a young furniture removals team in Alabama, with music by Sonic Youth.
Jamie's films, photographic studies, drawings and sculptural objects have been the subject of survey exhibitions at the Walker Arts Center in Minneapolis in 2006, MIT List Visual Arts Center in Massachusetts in 2007 and Kunsthalle Zurich in 2013.
Kranky Klaus and Spook House are part of The Artangel Collection.