Sachin Kaeley, Untitled, 2016
“It might seem perverse to suggest that Sachin Kaeley’s tactile paintings, which bear the markings of fingers dragged deep into layers of acrylic paint, might have something to do with digital image making. Despite the stroking and sweeping of paint around in manipulation of its pure physicality, that’s exactly what I’m going to suggest. Kaeley, who graduated from the RCA last year, and is currently based in Richmond, Virginia, creates paintings that are layered gloriously thick with acrylics and gels. Their surfaces appear as malleable as butter, icing or soft clay.
Kaeley picks out the furrows and ridges on these paintings with spray paint, which lends them a hyperreal quality. It’s as though their three dimensions were exaggerated in Photoshop by some keen post production assistant. At times, when approached head on, this gives them an unusual photographic flatness. In his current show at Seventeen gallery in London, several of these paintings and casts are grouped together in sets. Some of the cast versions created by Kaeley are made using bent or stretched moulds. This emphasises an odd pliancy and tension in the structure of the paintings themselves, as if they were digitally tweaked, pulled at by hidden vectors. It’s this very malleability that creates the impression of the ease and adaptability with which we go about image editing, and yet it’s nothing of the sort. So is what we looking at the non-mechanical reproduction of the work of art in the age of digital reproduction? It might just be. And very nice it is, too.”
Sachin Kaeley (b. 1982, Bedfordshire) lives and work in Berlin. Recent exhibitions include: ‘A ghost With a Finger on Your Tongue’ at Murias/Centeno, Porto (2016); ‘Accompanied By Sound’ at Contemporary Fine Arts Galerie, Berlin (2015); ‘Sachin Kaeley’ at Seventeen, London (2014); ‘Maximalism’ at Contemporary Fine Arts Galerie, Berlin (2014); ‘Sachin Kaeley’ at Galerie Hussenot, Paris (2014); ‘3A Project’ at Bodson Gallery, Brussels (2014); ‘Speculations on Anonymous Materials’ at Fridericianum, Kassel (2013); ‘Le Club de sous L’eau,’ at Palais de Tokyo, Paris (2013).