Signs of a City, at Galerie Jérôme Pauchant, Paris. May 2017.
In the solo exhibition of the London-based artist Nathaniel Rackowe, neon light recaptures the city it originated from, lighting up the gallery Jerome Pauchant in a halo of fluorescent luminous pulsations. The artist continues his resolute research on existing structures and signals offered by the urban environment in the new works presented here, this time choosing the petrol station as a creative set in an obsessive serial manner. If petrol stations are inevitably found in History of Art, such as E. Hopper's pale atmosphere paintings, or Ed Ruscha and his famous Twentysix gasoline stations, Nathaniel Rackowe does not suggest a range of built specifics or a tale of a particular experience: he makes it abstract by raising the specific aesthetic it develops in a generic form. Deprived of its use value, it becomes an empty sign, with no function, a part of a game of construction, deconstruction and rearrangement. (excerpt from text by Raphaëlle Romain )