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Peter Combe

Canada 1962

Installation, 3d Art, Photography

Peter Combe
Peter Combe
September 3, 2015
Alias of Jasmina Sevic, a researcher and author for Widewalls. She graduated from the Faculty of Political Science (Department for Journalism) in Belgrade in 2013.

Peter Combe is a Canadian-British contemporary artist and photographer known for his 3 dimensional artworks made of collaged paint chips. Based in San Francisco since 2008, Combe has focused his practice around explorations into multi-disciplinary aspects of working with paper as a medium through which the artist envelops the aesthetics of the other mediums including painting, sculpture, photography and digital-media.

Peter Combe - Untitled - Image Copyright the artist
Peter Combe – Untitled

Art by Peter Combe

Peter Combe creates a three-dimensional images using household paint swatches as a basic material, regularly hand-punched into small coloured disks. He places these commercially produced paint-samples into bevel-cut grooves on a specially prepared archival material so that the colours he selects appear at 45 degree angles and the reverse side of each colour-swatch. The artist engages the sculptural possibilities of disks building the illusion of images that appear to move and change depending on the viewer’s perspective. From a distance, Combe’s subjects gaze at the viewer while, upon closer inspection, the stunning details – looking like colorful, perfectly circular fish scales – expose themselves showing integral part of Combe’s image.

The artist makes a three-dimensional images using household paint swatches

Peter Combe - Work in progress - detail
Peter Combe – Work in progress – detail

Realistic Portraits Made from Paint Swatches

Peter Combe’s work range from abstract pattern-based color compositions to realistic portraits of people. Apart from producing portraits commissioned by collectors, many of Combe’s subjects are sourced from online social media, especially Instagram. By inserting the chips into a surface Combe makes pixelated representations of his subjects, the recreation of a photographs. In order to create portraits made from paint swatches, Peter Combe works speedily, thinking of tones rather than colors. For this reason he has organized his palette of over 1,100 colors into 28 groups based on tonal increments and light-reflecting values.

The playful tension produced between the three-dimensional appearance of the portraits and the visual flattening that occurs through the digital references made in Combe’s recent works are part of his ongoing examinations into the material characteristics that define ephemerality and permanence as well as representation and abstraction.

Portraits by Combe

Left: Peter Combe - Hephaestus - 2015 / Right: Peter Combe - Green eyed Cory - 2015
Left: Peter Combe – Hephaestus, 2015 / Right: Peter Combe – Green eyed Cory, 2015, photo credits Rarity Gallery

Collections and Exhibitions

Combe’s works is in many public and private collections including Laurence Hallier, Los Angeles; David Kensington, San Francisco; David Nazarian, Los Angeles; Sam Nazarian, Las Vegas; Mark Smucker, Ohio; and Chris Viehbacher, Boston. Peter Combe has participated in many individual and collective exhibitions in the USA and abroad, including at Robert Fontaine Gallery, Miami, FL; Back Gallery Project, Vancouver, BC, Canada; Luhring Augustine Gallery, New York, NY; Andrea Schwartz Gallery, San Francisco, CA; Galerie C.O.A, Montréal, QC, Canada; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, Netherlands; Museum of Fine Art, Florida State University, FL; and Centre de Cultura Contemporania de Barcelona, Barcleona, Spain, among others. In 2011 he produced a work for a Burrard Street Bridge as part of the City of Vancouver’s Public Art Program.

He is represented by Robert Fontaine Gallery in Miami, FL.

Peter Come lives and works in San Francisco, CA.

Featured photo by Jessica Christian
Images copyright © the artist

YearExhibition TitleMuseum/GallerySolo/Group
2016Peter CombeAndrea Schwartz Gallery, San Francisco, CASolo
2016Art GeneveRarity Gallery, Mikonos, GreeceGroup
2015Round SquareRobert Fontaine Gallery, Miami, FLGroup
2015Summer ContemporaryRarity Gallery, Mikonos, GreeceGroup
2015KonfettikunstBack Gallery Project, Vancouver, BC, CanadaGroup
2015Forms & FacesRobert Fontaine Gallery, Miami, FLGroup
2015Postcards From The EdgeLuhring Augustine Gallery, New York, NYGroup
2015LA-SFAndrea Schwartz Gallery, San Francisco, CAGroup
2015Art Silicon ValleyAndrea Schwartz GalleryGroup
2015X ContemporaryRobert Fontaine GalleryGroup
2015Scope Art FairRobert Fontaine GalleryGroup
2015Art MiamiAndrea Schwartz GalleryGroup
2015Miami ProjectRobert Fontaine GalleryGroup
2015Art WynwoodRobert Fontaine GalleryGroup
2015Art Palm BeachRobert Fontaine GalleryGroup
2014PlayGalerie C O A , Montréal, QC, Canada Group
2014Art PerspectivesRobert Fontaine Gallery, Miami, FL Group
2014Complimentary ColorPentimenti Gallery, Philadelphia, PA Group
2014Peter Combe & Edward LentschLanoue Gallery, Boston, MA Group
2014Peter Combe, Your Name In Lights By John Baldessari, Illuminated BillboardMonnaie de Paris, Paris, France Solo
2014Postcards From The EdgeLuhring Augustine Gallery, New York, NY Group
2014Context Art MiamiRobert Fontaine GalleryGroup
2014Art Market San FranciscoSBArtsGroup
2014Photo L.A.Smith Andersen North GalleryGroup
2013Drugstore Beetle (Sitodrepa Paniceum) IiCalifornia State University, Special Collections Library, Long Beach, CAGroup
2013Photo L.A.Smith Andersen North GalleryGroup
2012Postcards From The EdgeSikkema Jenkins & Co Gallery, New York, NY Group
2012Photo L.A.Smith Andersen North GalleryGroup
2011Postcards From The EdgeCheim & Read Gallery, New York, NY Group
2011Peter Combe, Your Name In Lights By John Baldessari, Illuminated BillboardStedelijk Museum, Amsterdam, Netherlands Solo
2011David Horvitz Satellite ExhibitionLes Rencontres d’Arles, Arles, France Group
2011This Is Not A Love Song, Digital Natives, Electronic Billboard Burrard Street BridgeCity of Vancouver Public Art Program, Vancouver, Canada Group
2011Photo L.A.Smith Andersen North GalleryGroup
2010Peter Combe; Punched & ShreddedSmith Andersen North, San Anselmo, CA Solo
2010California Open, TagBergamot Station, Santa Monica, CAGroup
2010Twitter/Art+Social MediaDiane Farris Gallery, Vancouver, CanadaGroup
20093Rd Coast NationalKSpace Contemporary, Corpus Christi, TXGroup
20094Th National Juried ExhibitionAxis Gallery, Sacremento, CA Group
2009California OpenTAG Gallery, Santa Monica, CA Group
200924Th Tallahasse InternationalMuseum of Fine Art, Florida State University, FL Group
2006DrapartCentre de Cultura Contemporania de Barcelona, Barcleona, Spain Group
2005Art+5One Point Six Gallery, Vancouver, Canada Group
2005KillerOne Point Six Gallery, Vancouver, Canada Group