About Paul DD Smith: In his practice, Paul DD Smith (b. 1983, Woodbridge) works towards a treatment of the figure that revels in a chimerical hybridity; both in the meeting of materials and processes and in the deployment of sources and references. His engagement with hand crafts such as ceramics, silk painting, embroidery and printmaking are aligned with the haptic approaches of the Arts and Crafts movement and Jugendstil. Smith identifies with the sometimes overripe stylisation of these movements where the ornament exceeds an object’s function (a deviance that Adolf Loos famously chastised). The resulting juxtapositions and elaborations play with their proximity to kitsch and psychedelic aesthetics. Smith understands the ornament as something that ties erotic forces and by doing so potentially enhances them. In Smith’s work, patterns often veil and frame figures, both channeling the gaze and sending it off on detours. These complex entanglements present ambiguous pleasures of luxuriance and constriction. Within these hybrid constellations, implicit and explicit power dynamics play out. The shaping of bodies implies their consumption by the gaze. A ‘chimerical’ approach resists easy consumption but entails its own disciplines and internal contradictions.
Paul DD Smith (b. 1983, England) lives and works in Berlin, Germany. He holds a Master degree of HFBK Hamburg (class: Jutta Koether), a Bachelor of Leeds Metropolitan University and a Bachelor of Arts and English Literature of Sussex University.
In 2020, Smith received the grant from the Kulturprojekte Berlin; he was nominated for the Hiscox Kunst Preis (2017) and participated in the residency program of Künstlerhaus Vorwerkstift in Hamburg (2016) after he received the grant of HFBK Hamburg Freundeskreis. He has had exhibitions at Misc. Athens, Athens (2021); Stroboskop, Warsaw (2021); CK Offspace, Leipzig (2020); Kinderhook & Caracas, Berlin (2020); ACUD Macht Neu, Berlin (2020); ChertLüdde, Berlin (2019); Kunstverein Tiergarten, Berlin (2019); Galerie Genscher, Hamburg (2019); Real Positive, Köln (2016); Electrohaus, Hamburg (2016) and PSL (Project Space Leeds), Leeds (2012).