Up until now, like me, you may know Nick as one of our bartenders. See him – and IKEA’s products – in a new light, at this conceptual multimedia artist’s debut solo exhibition in Miami, Nicholas Arehart: Improving Everyday Life for the Majority (also the Swedish retailer’s tagline.)
I went for a look last Sunday at Christopher Miro Gallery. You can too, through next Sunday, November 14 (71 E. Flagler St., downtown Miami; 305-741-0058.) Trust me, it’s worth checking out before it’s too late — especially if you can finagle getting Nick there to offer insight into the making of each work.
The collection is a cohesive whole of distinct parts. Nick transformed several SKUs from their intended assemblage into unique art pieces, each imbued with new meaning. It’s a commentary on the tradeoff that characterizes the modern industrial age, where accessible design for the masses dethrones artisanal craftsmanship.
To construct the piece pictured above, Nick backed his pick-up truck into a LEIRVIK bed and mattress, then carefully arranged the splintered shards into place. It’s symbolic of his move to Miami from Orlando and the strain that the transition, especially moving to a new city with no roots, had on personal relationships.
For this video piece, Nick digitally manipulated a film downloaded through BitTorrent into 100,000 stills and then strung them back together. He won’t share what movie it is, but if you step back, you may be able to make out the image I shot here. There’s another video piece that involves cutlery, but you’ll just have to visit the gallery to view that one!
Now, for tonight’s main event! Our neighbors at Locust Projects have asked us to cook up some tasty nibbles for Smash & Grab, their fall fundraiser tonight, where Nick is a featured artist. A $425 ticket gets you an original piece of artwork, libations like Groslch, and the opportunity to chow on Chickpea & Local Avocado Salad and BBQ Brisket Sandwich with Bourbon BBQ Sauce & Spicy Mustard Slaw from the MGFD Cart. Locust Projects Director Chana Budgazard Sheldon loves the piece that Nick is raffling. We just love supporting them both.
Hope you can make it out tonight, or, of course, view Nick’s Improving Life for the Majority at Christopher Miro Gallery for free.