The Strange Case Company showcases the collective work of BAFTA award winning designer Jamie Durrant. Established in 2009, he playfully blends striking imagery with counterintuitive juxtapositions and intricate, fine details. The company produces a range of unique prints that are available to buy via The Strange Case Company website and through select galleries.
Starting with an interest in mysterious objects and the stories – both imaginary and real – that can weave historical items together, Durrant originally launched The Strange Case Company to produce cabinets of curiosities filled with exotic collections of Victorian memorabilia. While these intriguing creations have proved to be highly sought after, however, the production process entails that only a small number can ever be produced. Steering The Strange Case Company in new directions, he decided to distill the ethos of the cabinets into a series of two-dimensional artworks accessible to a wide audience.
Where Durrant’s cabinets collected curious items in a single housing, The Strange Case Company prints continue the tradition of cataloguing, categorizing and displaying the obscure and the reimagined. Engaging their shared interests in all things eclectic and esoteric – from Victorian curiosities and taxidermy to the iconography of Americana and Great Britain – Durrant has also ensured his imagery is defined by a modern, playful aesthetic.
The prints frequently take historical or easily recognizable objects as a starting point and overlay them with unexpected motifs, forcing the viewer to look again at visual tropes and what they represent. A recurring theme is to take objects commonly associated with macho or masculine obsessions and to inject them with a lighter, more feminine tone. Examples include the Skull Toile series, which combines the striking outline of animal skulls with the floral patterns of toile fabric, and the Plate Series, which features the intricate reworking of both guns and skulls.
Viewing his work as the product of cooly executed design, rather than artistic self-expression, Durrant benefited from a successful design career in the production of video games (something that has aided his computer generated pieces). After an interrupted stint at art college, Durrant started work in TV and film production design, including time assisting revered special effects expert Geoff Portass. Durrant then went on to work in museum animatronics and video game design, for which he was awarded a BAFTA.
Strange Case have recently be championed by the TV presenter Jonathan Ross. The well-known celeb tweeted his admiration for the silkscreen on acrylic piece All Change. The message of approval was shared with Ross’ 3.9M followers on the social media platform and provided some well earned exposure for The Strange Case Company. All Change is an example of Jamie Durrant pushing the boundaries of print and expanding his practice. The stunning limited edition is constructed of three separate 3mm acrylic sheets. When layered onto of each other the cyan, magenta and yellow coloured coins form the portrait of the Queen. Jonathan Ross clearly has great taste! Strange Case is proving to be the master of tongue in cheek retro styling; the perfect blend of British patriotism and eccentricity.
He is based in Worthing, West Sussex.