Basil Papoutsidis – Darlington Stripe


Basil Papoutsidis, Hemi, 2016, steel, PVC, pine, enamel and acrylic on MDF, 110 x 110cm,

Basil Papoutsidis, Hemi, 2016, steel, PVC, pine, enamel and acrylic on MDF, 110 x 110cm,

Opening Night: Friday, Sep 2, 6-8pm

In the world of NASCAR, the American auto racing empire, there is no such thing as an easy race and the Darlington Raceway is no exception. The “Darlington Stripe”, a phrase well-known amongst NASCAR circles, refers to the black mark or dented sheet metal that ensues from an encounter with the outside wall of the toughest track. For drivers is to be worn like a badge of honour. On the racetrack these spectacular machines become objects of considerable speed and strength, it is here that Papoutsidis’ affinity for materiality and motion is borne.

Interested in the sculptural and post-painterly contexts of formalist abstraction, Papoutsidis utilises the form and texture of automotive materials – from powder-coated steel to PVC and enamel – to create bold minimalist constructions that embody a sense of movement. Fractured steel lines, powder coated in primary colours; geometric forms adorned with automotive offcuts; PVC pipes lodged at obtrusive angles, these structures act as ‘vehicles’ repurposing classic automotive principals to reflect upon new methods of construction. While seemingly arbitrary in composition, each work is meticulously designed, and built according to a specific hierarchical structure, a Darlington Stripe for the beauty of honest construction.

Graduating from the Victorian College of the Arts with a Bachelor of Fine Art in 2014, Basil Papoutsidis has held several solo shows, including Camber at C3 Art Space, Melbourne (2016), Livery at Nicholas Projects, Melbourne (2016), Sunday Ride at Seventh Gallery, Melbourne (2016) and Auto Salon at Kings Artist-run, Melbourne (2015). He has also exhibited at the International Mokuhanga Conference – Geidai in Tokyo, Japan (2014) and his work is represented in a number of private and public collections, including the Epworth Hospital, Melbourne.