Nick Gentry – Companion
Made in London using old computer discs showing how far technology has moved on.
British artist Nicholas James Gentry was always fascinated with faces as a child and today that fascination is clear to see in his amazing works of art. London born Nick studied art in Hertfordshire, Liverpool and finally at Central St Martins in London, much of his artistic output is generated through the use of contributed artefacts and materials. Drawing on recycled and obsolete technological materials as the grounds for his paintings, Nick creates a conversation between digital and analogue processes. He constructs his painting supports out of materials such as 35mm film negatives, VHS cassettes, X-ray prints, and floppy discs. “These objects are no longer in the spotlight,” he says “but by placing them there for a second, it becomes easier to comprehend the speed and extent of the changes that are taking place today.”
Recently, I had the opportunity to meet Nick during a brunch and exclusive pop-up exhibition held at Opera Gallery in Mayfair where Nick was in conversation with Opera Gallery director Federica Beretta. The exhibition and talk was very interesting, it covered the 30th anniversary of the internet, artificial intelligence, biometrics, and how all of these inform his artistic practice. In Nick’s art, obsolete technologies including vinyl, floppy disks, CD’s and VHS cassette tapes are put back in the spotlight for us to comprehend how quickly technology is progressing. Nick sources his materials from members of the public as part of his ‘social art’ project, which allows for shared histories to become part of a collective identity. Following the Opera Gallery event Nick is to make a series of portraits to create a multifaceted “Face of London” using old vinyl serves and photos of some attendees ‘which included myself’.
Opera Gallery was founded by Gilles Dyan in the 1990’s and is now one of the leading international dealers and representatives of Modern and Contemporary Art. Opera Gallery is established worldwide with galleries in locations including New York, Miami, Paris, Monaco, Geneva, Hong Kong, Dubai and more. Through the gallery, museums, foundations and private international art collectors are offered unique access to a diversity of Modern and Contemporary artists through an exciting programme of curated exhibitions and high profile art fairs.