June 4, 2019

British Palette Master Nick Smith Creates Art from Paint Chips

Designers: Here’s a tip. Your expert eye for color could open you to a whole other profession. It did for Nick Smith. After re­ceiving a master’s degree in pro­duct design, he practiced interior design for 10 years, constantly surrounded by paint chips and swatches. Then, a lightbulb went off. Retaining color methodology as the core of his work, he began creating his own chips, and then arranged hundreds of them into artworks. Today, the contemp­orary British artist’s pieces range in size from 15 by 18 inches to 3 1/2 by 4 1/2 feet, the larger ones containing upwards of 1,000 hand-glued chips.

Da Vinci-Mona Lisa, Nick Smith’s color-chip collage on paper, is at Rhodes Contemporary Art in London through June 1. Photography courtesy of Nick Smith.

His latest exhibition, “Pinched,” at Rhodes Contemporary Art in London, showcases iconic paint­ings that had been stolen at one point—The Scream and Mona Lisa among them—that Smith has de­constructed, the chips providing information on their theft.

Read next: K&Co Brings the Scent of Success to Cult Perfumery D.S. & Durga’s NYC Flagship

> See more from the May 2019 issue of Interior Design

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