James Jean Launches 'Aurelians' Print Just in Time for Butterfly Season

Capturing the ephemerality and beauty of butterflies.

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Arts
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James Jean continues his steady release of work to his loyal fans, this time offering up a summertime-themed giclée art print. Titled Aurelians, the artwork tells a part of Jean’s past memories with insects, and at the same time, embodies a more universal and historic meaning. As “aurelian” can point to both an archaic term for a lepidopterist (someone who studies and collects butterflies) and the 270 – 275 AD Roman emperor; the image tells of how things from a lowly and modest beginning can go on to become something far greater — much like the story of Aurelian, and how a caterpillar emerges as a beautiful butterfly. Aurelians depicts three girls chasing butterflies as they transition from child to adult — another nod towards change and growth.

As Jean shares, “Los Angeles recently experienced an unusually massive butterfly migration due to the heavy rains. Swarms of butterflies flew through Los Angeles and over the freeways as they journeyed up to northern California. This particular species of butterfly is called the Painted Lady, and I thought of the Aurelians, trying to capture the butterflies in the ephemeral moments of their youth.”

Available for only 24 hours, each signed and numbered Aurelians print comes with diamond dust detailing, holographic and metallic gold enhancements, and is stamped with an intricate chop. Look for the print to go on sale at the JAMES JEAN store on July 9 for a price of $250 USD.

For more art news, KAWS cuts ties with Perrotin and is now solely represented by Skarstedt Gallery.

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✨?✨Aurelians will be available for 24 hours starting at 8:00 AM PDT on Tuesday, July 9 and ending at 7:59 AM PDT on Wednesday, July 10. The edition is limited by the number of prints sold during those 24 hours and never reprinted.⠀ ⠀ Just in time for butterfly season, Aurelians is now available as a signed and numbered time-limited edition of giclée prints. The term Aurelian refers to someone who is interested in butterflies. It also refers to Aurelian, the Roman Emperor from 270 – 275 AD, who ascended to the throne through the military from humble beginnings. Therefore, the use of the term may come from the idea that great things can emerge from lowly or modest sources, like how the butterfly emerges from a chrysalis after beginning life as a caterpillar. The etymology of Aurelian is also related to aureolus, which means golden, or golden in nature. So, the three young girls in Aurelians are surrounded by a yellow summer sky punctuated by golden daytime stars. They chase butterflies as part of a childhood ritual, the summers fleeting and fading away as they transform into adults. In fact, I remember that there used to be many more insects around when I was a child growing up and playing in the woods. Insects would constantly invade the house and backyard, and the spring and summer would bring swarms of fireflies and bees. Now, I don’t see as many bugs around. So it comes as no surprise that a recent report says that 40% of the world’s population of insects are in decline. However, Los Angeles recently experienced an unusually massive butterfly migration due to the heavy rains. Swarms of butterflies flew through Los Angeles and over the freeways as they journeyed up to northern California. This particular species of butterfly was called the Painted Lady, and I thought of the Aurelians, trying to capture the butterflies in the ephemeral moments of their youth.

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James Jean “AURELIANS” Print

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