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Les Joynes (US)

American, born Southern California, 1963.

Lives and works in New York.


Artist and founder of FormLAB ©, a geographically-dispersed exhibition series in museums. BA (Hons) Fine Art, Central Saint Martins College of Art (UAL), London; MA Fine Art Goldsmiths, London; Masters in Fine Art, Musashino Art University, Tokyo; Ph.D. Fine Art, Leeds Metropolitan University, UK; Research on ritual in Fine Art, University of Sao Paulo, Brazil. Visiting Scholar, Columbia University, New York.

(image: Joynes in sculpture performance at the Brazilian Museum of Sculpture).

Conceived in 1996 at Goldsmiths, London, FormLAB is a nomadic laboratory that explores the phenomena and processes of artmaking. In an increasingly globalized (and flattening) world, artists use exploration and intercultural collaboration to learn not only about themselves but also about other cultures and to broaden the conception of art.


Les Joynes is Visiting Scholar at Columbia University, New York and was Fulbright-Hays US Public Diplomacy Awardee for Mongolia (2014) and China (2017). As US Department of State sponsored ACMS Field Research Fellow he has authored the first research on Mongolian university art education. He is 2015 TrAIN Research Fellow at the Research Centre for Transnational Art, Identity and Nation (TrAIN) at Chelsea College of Art, The University of the Arts London where he led a Ph.D. masterclass on collective artmaking.


He now contributes to four publications on intercultural art education and pedagogy: Going Beyond: Art as Adventure (Cambridge Scholars, UK); Intercultural Collaboration in the Arts: Shamanism, Ritual and Arts in Brazil (University of Sao Paulo, Brazil); ProjectAnywhere v.1 (Parsons New School, New York), dialogues on emerging fine art pedagogy (Critical Practices, New York); and Draw: Mapping Madness (Catalogue) Inside Out Art Museum, Beijing and Neiman Foundation, New York.


He is co-author of The Invisible and the Transvisible in contemporary art, Singapore, Journal for Visual Culture, University of California, Irvine (Joynes and Basu, 2011); Japanese art and Yuichi Higashionna at NADIF, Tokyo, Flash Art, Milan (Joynes, 2000); Some Say They Did: Some Say They Didn’t, Japanese contemporary art of Yoshitomo Nara at Ginza Art Space, Art in America (Joynes, 1999); David Thorpe and Brian Griffiths and British art in the 1990s, Springer, Vienna (Joynes, 1998).


Educated in the US, UK and Japan, Les studied under Michael Craig-Martin and Gerard Hemsworth at Goldsmiths; Japanese sculptor Hisayuki Mogami in Tokyo; and French sculptor Jean Cardot at the Ecole Nationale Superieure des Beaux-arts Paris. He studied painting technique from James Rosenquist at the Guggenheim Masterclasses. Joynes’ work draws inspiration from Andy Warhol, Dash Snow, Claes Oldenburg, Lucio Fontana, Alberto Burri, Panamarenko, and Joseph Beuys.


He has exhibited at the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Australia; Inside Out Art Museum, Beijing; Museu Brasileiro da Escultura, Brazil; Maejima Art Center, Japan; Seoul Foundation for Art & Culture, Korea; Bangkok Experimental Film Festival, Thailand; Nordisk Kunstnarsenter, Norway; Museum of Modern Art, Wales, UK; Zanabazar Museum of Fine Art, Mongolia; AIT Tactical Museum, Japan; Norimatsu Museum, Japan; Thomas Jaeckel Gallery, New York; Michael Steinberg Fine Art, New York; Sandra Bürgel Gallery, Berlin; Nylon, London; and Mizuma Gallery, Tokyo.


In 1998 he was Curatorial Assistant for the first Taipei International Biennial, Taiwan snd curator for Network, a Japan-UK Cultural Year exhibition of 200 artists from Europe, the US, and Japan. As Fellow at the Bauhaus Foundation Dessau he explored Le Corbusier’s utopian visions of the city and created performances in Berlin (2008) and Singapore (2009).


His work features in public and private collections in the UK, US, Japan and has recently been acquired by the Museu de Arte Brasileira (MAB), in Sao Paulo Brazil.


He is represented by Thomas Jaeckel Gallery, New York.

Image: Les Joynes, left, and members of Blue Sun installing FormLAB at Zanabazar Museum of Fine Art, Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia, 2014.

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