An exhibition themed around a specific pop culture release can test the true mettle of an artist, exposing if they are satisfied to contribute a simple homage or whether they are invested in composing something grander. When he was invited to participate in Gallery1988‘s Don’t Cry, Mac: A Tribute to Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out!!, DrilOne (Alex Drils) admirably chose the latter route. And his contribution, NES (2017), succeeds not only in creatively satisfying the showcase’s theme but also in evolving the artist’s own signature style.
Known for taking newly made forms and distressing them to look weathered, DrilOne foregoes his normal series of applications to create an aged appearance and instead relies on the material itself to provide the desired effect. Made out of reclaimed lumber from old fencing, his handmade piece is the likeness of a classic 8-bit Nintendo Entertain System (NES) gaming console, complete with hinged slot door that can hide or reveal a non-removable rendition of the Punch-Out!! cartridge. And while this wall mounted work, at 20 inches wide, is roughly double the size of its real-life counterpart, the truly impressive aspect of this piece isn’t the size; it is the juxtaposition of the form and what it’s constructed out of, singularly reminding the viewer of both when wooden toys dominated in desirability and how they were displaced by the video game revolution.

Exhibition Details for NES

DrilOne’s NES made its public display debut as part of the Don’t Cry, Mac: A Tribute to Mike Tyson’s Punch-Out!! exhibition at Gallery1988 (West). Having had its opening reception on Friday, March 17th from 7-9pm, all works in this exhibition will remain on display until April 1st, 2017 at the gallery’s physical location (7308 Melrose Ave, Los Angeles, CA 90046).

View the gallery’s dedicated page for the exhibition

For more information on DrilOne:
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