29 February – 11 April
To enter Nick Mauss’s exhibition at 303 Gallery, you must push through not one but two doors, painted with loose outlines of figures amidst swathes of lavender and teal, like the entrance to a closet or a tomb. The doors choreograph how visitors move through a show that – like so much of Mauss’s work – is itself about choreography. The bodies of dancers are rendered in acrylic, ink and charcoal with the fast yet sure hand of a balletomane, their arms raised or extended against screen-printed spangles and silver paint – hallmarks of Andy Warhol. If Mauss’s paintings seem to merge the pop-art icon’s later style with his early years as a fashion illustrator, they also trace a lineage of the queer image from the figurative to the abstract. Decorative patterns are both inscribed onto and stand in for human skin (Compilation, 2020); chequers cascade down the ponytail of a woman as she looks in a vanity mirror (Untitled, 2016); while scalloped shells and drapery folds evoke the bodies that may have once resided or moved in them (As Companions, 2020).