Daniel Arsham‘s exhibition at PERROTIN art gallery presents a suite of sculptures inspired from classical antiquity’s iconic busts, friezes etc. Daniel Arsham is interested in the re-constructive nature of objects in front of time. We all have some kind of an imagination and some perceptions of classical antiquity and Daniel Arsham creates art-works that play with both our imagination and perceptions of this period of time’s art productions.

Arsham’s replicas have been produced by casting each item in hydro-stone to imitate perfectly the original shapes and sizes and they have been pigmented by similar to classical sculpture dyes, such as blue calcite, quartz, volcanic ash, selenite and so on. Afterwards, the surface of hydro-stone undergoes some erosion and Arsham’s signature tactic of crystallization is applied.

2013 Exhibition – #TOMORROWSPAST

This is a sculpture of Micky Mouse phone, that was created by using either resin or volcanic ash, that is here to remind us that it existed once and now feels so obsolete in the age of the iPhone. Arsham has other sculptures, that carry the same message, too.

2013 Exhibition – #TOMORROWSPAST

Crumbling and corroded, this exhibition showcased many other objects that represent the “yesterday”, that already feels so old-fashioned and non-relevant, that makes us smile or even laugh.

The element of fear and failure is in all of the works and all of the exhibitions. Daniel makes art that some may say has no purpose, because everything in architecture has a practical function, but not him art. Arsham’s ideas are very simple and strong. They sometimes remind us something and proposes updated perceptions of things we already new.

Both the 2013 “#TOMORROWSPAST” and the 2020 “Paris 3020” exhibitions showcase eroded items or icons that are shaped by using steel fragments, resin, volcanic ash, broken glass. The choice of these materials is indeed not a coincidence, because they symbolize the new role of those items and icons: the non-functionality and uselessness.


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