Edward James thought of himself primarily as a poet yet his innovations in art, design and architecture mark him out as an unrecognised visionary of the twentieth century. Through his patronage and creative partnerships with prominent Surrealists such as Salvador Dalí and René Magritte, James was involved in the creation of some of the most enduring representations of the avant-garde, including the iconic Mae West Lips Sofa and Lobster Telephone.
James sought to escape the conventions of his Edwardian upbringing, using his inherited wealth to sponsor artistic expression and to explore the limits of the imagination. His circle of associates indicated a lifestyle as fantastical as the works of art he acquired. In his pursuit of beauty, James meticulously designed every aspect of his world, often seeking to bridge the gap between dream and reality.
James was a committed writer of poetry and prose, often using his own imprint, The James Press, to produce beautifully crafted editions of his work.