Left to Own Devices @ Patisserie Valerie

Posted on October 19, 2010 by Kasia

Kevin Wayne – Left to Own Devices
18th October- 4th December 2011
at Patisserie Valerie
Brompton Road, Kensington, SW3 2GB

Kevin Wayne presents Left to own devices, a show comprising of hand-made sculptures and box constructions produced over the last three and a half years.

Wayne’s work is rooted in what could be termed as a ‘more is more’ attitude, in that the viewer is invited to investigate and explore a variety of visually dense and detailed objects that sit at a crossroads of alternative illustration and the model-making craft enthusiast. In his recent work Wayne has started to employ a visual grammar of re-occurring characters and environments such as lost or disaffected children and teenagers, tangled networks of pipes and wiring and whimsical constructions of would-be buildings and machines. “I am interested in the state of being confused or lost and the awkwardness and vulnerability that comes with it. Over the last decade I worked with children who are in foster care and have been subject to some form of neglect or abuse.”

If Wayne’s work were to be attached to any contemporary trends it would be towards the movement (predominantly rising out of the American west coast over the last decade or so) towards ‘Lowbrow’ art and Pop-surrealism, as epitomized by artists such as Mark Ryden and Gary Baseman. As with 1950’s and 60’s Pop art Britain found its own way of translating shared sensibilities through artists such as Peter Blake and Eduardo Paolozzi. Wayne regards himself in a similar mold, taking on the mantle of celebrating the lowbrow leftovers of visual culture, and attempting to find a way of fusing the parochial and idiosyncratic concerns of a man living and working in a provincial English town. Ultimately Wayne is attempting to create unexpected and surreal little windows into which we peer. Some of what we see may charm and delight, some of it however maybe the cause for darker concern.

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