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Artist Transforms VHS Tapes and Obsolete Technology Into Striking Portraits

Technology Art by Nick Gentry

Cloud computing is changing the way we think about technology. Thanks to rapid advances in memory storage, the days of bulky discs and hard drives are over. But what happens to all of the now-obsolete tech items accumulating dust in our homes? This e-waste is at the heart of British artist Nick Gentry’s work. Collecting floppy discs, VHS tapes, and other hallmarks of old technology, he uses the objects as materials and unconventional canvases for his portraiture. Gentry will paint solemn women on the top of floppy discs, use film negatives as brush strokes, and even shatter old CDs as a way to suspend his subjects in holographic reverie.

One of the most compelling parts of Gentry’s portfolio is his work with floppy discs. The small squares are labeled with their former uses, whether it was a school paper or a work presentation. When placed together, they mark a time that will never return, as they are not compatible with current technology. Although it’s a positive thing that the world is advancing, the collection of these memory discs is poignant. They are a symbol of life and a reminder of how quickly it passes us by.

A selection of Gentry’s work is in a show called Human Connection at the Opera Gallery in London. His portraits will be alongside Young-Deok Seo, an artist who recreates the human figure in bicycle chain sculptures. Human Connection is on view from September 14 to September 28, 2018.

Artist Nick Gentry creates compelling technology art from outdated electronics.

Technology Art by Nick Gentry

Some of his most striking work is with floppy discs…

Technology Art by Nick Gentry Technology Art by Nick Gentry Technology Art by Nick Gentry

… but he also uses film negatives like brush strokes.

Technology Art by Nick Gentry Technology Art by Nick Gentry

Gentry will also crush CDs to create figures with a holographic tint.

Technology Art by Nick Gentry Technology Art by Nick Gentry Technology Art by Nick Gentry Technology Art by Nick Gentry

Nick Gentry: Website | Instagram
h/t: [Creative Boom]

All images via Nick Gentry.

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Sara Barnes

Sara Barnes is a Staff Editor at My Modern Met, Manager of My Modern Met Store, and co-host of the My Modern Met Top Artist Podcast. As an illustrator and writer living in Seattle, she chronicles illustration, embroidery, and beyond through her blog Brown Paper Bag and Instagram @brwnpaperbag. She wrote a book about embroidery artist Sarah K. Benning titled 'Embroidered Life' that was published by Chronicle Books in 2019. Sara is a graduate of the Maryland Institute College of Art. She earned her BFA in Illustration in 2008 and MFA in Illustration Practice in 2013.
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