James Crossley is an urban dweller and thinker, an art director and graphic (non-)designer, a brand strategist and campaigner, and is based in Amsterdam.
His projects and practice build on concepts of movement and migration within and between urban spaces, using graphic design, community building, and critical thought to dissect physical, social, and political binaries and boundaries.
He is currently Creative & Communication Manager at BYCS, an Amsterdam based global NGO that supports community-led cycling change, alongside voluntary roles with grassroots groups including Thighs of Steel and Border Cheque.
Please get in touch* for more information or to discuss commission and collaboration: firstname.lastname@example.org
The Bicycle Citizens' Network is a platform created to unite cycle advocates worldwide, and mobilise the groundswell surrounding the Bicycle Mayor Network.
As a digital campaign it reimagines cycling activist messaging to appeal to a wide urban audience, pairing an intersectional approach to issues that cycling can contribute towards with a mischievous tone. These open source advocacy tools are freely available for anyone to help spread the message of human-centric cities.
In 2022 in Glasgow the Network took physical form with the holding of the COP26 Cycling Forum. This event brought together grassroots and high level voices to shout for active mobility as a simple and fair way to combat many of the issues that cities are faced with due to climate change.
Concept, Direction, Design, Community Management, Production, Event Organising, PR
BYCS Perspectives is a space for knowledge sharing and exploration of urban issues intersecting with the bicycle. Published digitally every quarter, interviews and opinion pieces address a specific theme, from urban resilience, gender fair cities, stronger neighbourhood economies, improved mental and physical health, early childhood development or climate action. This output highlights the bicycle as a tool with many benefits beyond transportation.
In 2023 BYCS partnered with Velo-city Conference to bring a special edition of Perspectives to print for all attendees. This issue covered “Global Cycling Cultures” with interviewees from Nigeria, Chile and Turkey; and was printed as an A1 foldout poster to enable our message to be taken home and displayed proudly.
Direction, Design, Production, PR
NUMENT is an open source mapping project for recording and publicising civil unrest.
Thousands of protests, uprisings, actions, happen every year; but by relying on state sanctioned digital platforms to log our public histories, memory of these moments is often lost or suppressed. NUMENT uses these same mapping tools to preserve and publicise protest by inserting our own monuments into the “public” online realm. Here, although still vulnerable to removal, a commons representing public memorial can emerge.
To plot your own monument to a protest visit nument.xyz.
3D monument design: Louis Brooks
Concept, Direction, Design, Web, PR
ENDOTA is an event series to celebrate the coming of the end of the age of man.
Since the industrial revolution and the advent of fossil-fuels, humans have pillaged the Earth's resources and left the waste to permeate the atmosphere. Now we're reaping the rewards of two centuries of fun (for some). The early 21st century marks the tipping point of environmental awareness and either action, or inaction.
The ENDOTA series of parties recognises key events on the way to mitigation, or total destruction. Defined by scientific predictions taken from current studies, the dates, times, and locations continually shift as we either accelerate climate change, or manage to combat its effects.
Tickets available for free for all on eventbrite. A donation to the Climate Emergency Fund for the price of a club entry is voluntary.
The series is launched as an independent endeavour, but partnership and collaboration is being continually sought, both to increase the platform of the project, and to legitimise the scientific basis of the predictions.
Concept, Direction, Design
Platte Gang started as series of breezy cycle and camping weekends out of Amsterdam, once a month throughout summer since 2019. It has evolved into an active community, fundraising, and research project.
In 2023 these rides were curated to explore the concept of the Dutch “Inbetween”, which incorporates binaries of economic, bureaucratic, productive, and spatial natures. In a country that is by its nature an Inbetween, there are suprisingly few Inbetween spaces, processes, or ideologies to be found.
A printed publication collates the groups' questions about our surrounding systems and spaces, in a continuously moving shared community of practice in perceiving, protesting, and pedalling. Cycling as an ethnographic device not only logistically allowed the gathering of research material through deliberately slow movement, but by voluntarily traversing liminal zones usually skipped by fast capitalist mobility, it rejected a way of living that doesn't make space for non-binary thought and space.
Each monthly ride is organised in support of initiatives run by and for displaced people in Europe. Thanks to voluntary participant donations, themselves often trapped in their own shifting bureaucratic and physical Inbetweens. The project has so far raised over €1000.
Concept, Direction, Design, Production, Pedalling
Pac Journal is a print publication as the culmination of a research project into creative migration within and between cities. Compiled during a bicycle tour from Holland to Hungary, interviews with design studios, photo stories of urban renewal projects, and free form travel notes from the saddle, come together to give visualise the state of temporary, and often precarious, creative spaces in European cities.
It was self-published in 2018 with talks and launch events in Amsterdam and The Hague, and stocked in several locations in Amsterdam. It can now be read online in full on issuu.
Concept, Direction, Design, Production, Speaking