Martin Asbæk Gallery, Copenhagen

Bredgade 23, 1260 Copenhagen, Denmark



Martin Asbæk Gallery presents two British contemporary artists; Paul McDevitt (b.1972) and Des Hughes (b.1970). Both artists engage in the history of art by taking motifs and iconography from twentieth century figurative and abstract art and reworking them in new and other medias such as ink drawing, graffiti cartoon and sculpture.

Paul McDevitt works with the artistic media drawing, and his Pop Art-inspired black and white paintings with references to the British recession, gives complementarynew look on the more traditional sculptural practice that Des Hughes engages in. both artists are fascinated by the strangeness of British art, whether it is primitive art, strange craft objects or the reinvention of landscape, still life in British Surrealism and modernist British sculptural history. Des Hughes Graduated from Fine Art (Sculpture) Bath College of Art in 1994 and finished his MA in2002 from Goldsmiths College in London. Paul McDevitt graduated from the Chelsea College of Art in 2000. Paul McDevitt’s works bear the mark of a naturally elegant and precise draftsman. He is a highly skilled draughtsman and his intricate drawings offer a unique interpretation of Modernist tropes. His refusal to propagate traditional art historical hierarchies exposes new, fantastical imagery that teeters on the peripheries of reality and deconstructs those myths still clinging to the practice of painting.

Des Hughes’ work bears witness to an obsessive, physical enquiry into the materials, methods and traditions of sculpture. He re-thinks conventional sculptural materials such as plaster, marble, bronze and clay. Nothing is as it first appears. For example crudely modelled clay is meticulously cast in resin but, with the inclusion of marble dust, it may appear to have been carved and polished from a block of stone or fashioned from a piece of chewing gum. Hughes' sculptural practice reconfigures our rapport with the everyday by staging banal ready-mades next to handcrafted replicas of commodities, and three-dimensional caricatures of familiar things.

Paul McDevitt, Ja Ja, 2016, Charcoal, pastel, and acrylic on paper, 183.5 x 149 cm
Paul McDevitt, Ja Ja, 2016, Acrylic and charcoal on canvas, 180 x 140 cm
Des Hughes, A Rush and a Push, 2016, Plaster and pigment, 49 x 43 x 35 cm
Des Hughes, Mother and Child, 2016, Plaster and pigment, 40 x 30 x 16 cm