ARTIST:

Nicolas Deshayes

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Nicolas Deshayes
Soho Fats, 2012
Polystyrene, aluminium, powdercoated steel and fixings
Dimensions variable

Nicholas Deshayes finds painterliness in the manmade, and his works hover somewhere between two different kinds of making: the organically gestural and the industrially produced. His works operate in what he calls “the threshold between liquid and solid”, and the contrasts in his work – roiled against levelled surfaces, the heat of production against cool of presentation – are a way of examining the relationship of humanity to the materials with which it surrounds itself. The title of Soho Fats, a series of five white panels mounted on floor-to-ceiling handrails, refers to the congealed human fats found in central London sewers; by using polystyrene, a non-biodegradable plastic familiar from packaging, Deshayes draws parallels between the human subject and its residual traces. Cutting into the surface with a hot wire cutter, Deshayes evokes both the bodily remainder and rippling water of the hidden core of the city. Deshayes’ interest in plastics is a reminder of both their human usage and human associations; their carbonic origins are our own.

Nicolas Deshayes
Acids (1), 2012
Anodised aluminium, vacuum formed plastic
110 x 170 cm

In Acids, Deshayes places framed sections of vacuum formed plastic on sheets of anodized aluminium. The aluminium, apparently stained with blanched purples, greens and ochres, recalls the sloshed skeins of abstract colour in a Rothko painting, here generated through the chemical activity of the metal, not the individual gesture of the artist. The plastic – mottled and creased like elderly skin – seems both churning with motion and frozen, stilled. Industrially produced, physically distant from the artist, Deshayes’ works still can’t help recall the human body, its frailties and residues.

Nicolas Deshayes
Acids (3), 2012
Anodised aluminium, vacuum formed plastic
110 x 170 cm

Nicolas Deshayes
Sebums (c), 2012
Anodised aluminium, vacuum formed plastic
110 x 71 x 8 cm

Nicolas Deshayes
Sebums (d), 2012
Anodised aluminium, vacuum formed plastic
110 x 71 x 8 cm

Text by Ben Street
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