Critics’ Picks

Nick Mauss, Released it, 2017, glass panels, paint, liquid silver, 87 x 63".

Nick Mauss, Released it, 2017, glass panels, paint, liquid silver, 87 x 63".


Nick Mauss

Campoli Presti | Paris
6 rue de Braque
October 19–December 9, 2017

Nick Mauss’s third exhibition with this gallery, arranged throughout both of its Rue de Braque locations, features works that deal with reflection, both literally and metaphorically. In the shadowy arena of Campoli Presti’s ground-floor space is the video installation The Moment (all works 2017). From a projector hung close to the ceiling, an image of a hand drawing an enigmatic sign is cast onto a mirror hanging from a wall. From there, the image is reflected onto the wooden floor, creating a subtle holographic effect while transforming the symbol into a viaticum for artistic creation. We also see this artwork reflected in Released it, a piece made up of nine small, rectangular mirrors. Using verre églomisé, a technique of reverse glass painting developed in the eighteenth century, the artist places this minor art form well outside the realm of the decorative. Mauss seals his handiwork with liquid silver, which pushes his imagery—abstracted figures and bucolic settings created through swiftly applied black brushstrokes—into something sensuous and nearly three-dimensional.

In the third-floor showroom is Procession, constructed using the same reverse-painting method. It was conceived to be subjected to frequent changes in natural light. The work invades a large wall and seems to be in intimate dialogue with two large antique mirrors that were already on-site. The scene is transporting, gently guiding the viewer to someplace otherworldly yet everyday.

Translated from Italian by Marguerite Shore.