Oliver Durcan
© Oliver Durcan, 2017
Site by Luke McDonald



SET Studios, East India, London


A splattered table top or a wrapped up painting are studio objects in flux. One is a by-product; the other is paused. Oliver uses these behind-the-scenes objects to reveal hidden elements of art-production. This generous approach makes process and work-in-progress visible, undermining the myth of infallible artist. These fragments of the studio process are carefully selected; one is given a precisely fit frame while another is translated into detailed, realist painting. Each piece is a snapshot that has been captured, meticulously preserved and then elaborated upon. The real objects have been removed from their raw context and dressed up as art.

Art handling, art storage, studio chaos: it is about a process which is fast and messy and routine but the work itself is slick, precise and sexy. The work is honest in its deceit; more winking actor than sly con-man, talking about itself or at least its world (the art-world). The change from object into ‘art-object’ raises discussion about the assignation of value. At what stage does the object in a studio become an artwork with a monetary and intellectual value attached?

Text by Eleanor Pearch

Oly at work