This Artist Will Make You See Linoleum in a Whole New Way

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By Matthew Keeshin and Dwell
David Scanavino creates art with an array of unexpected materials.

From paper pulp to VCT, artist David Scanavino thoughtfully takes unassuming materials to another level with his work. Linoleum is commonly flooring for schools, hospitals, and other institutional buildings. It's not a material that often provokes a statement. High school floors are white, maybe even speckled, or perhaps the school colors.  By constructing site-specific installations, Scanavino lets the tiles leap off the floors. Planes of color stretch onto the walls and breaks that typical relationship between the art and the gallery walls. Scanavino's work doesn't just hang, it engages the space. Installations have intersected such places as the Bronx Courthouse, the Aldrich Museum, and the Pulitzer Foundation. 

His paper pulp pieces evoke a similar curiosity for the viewer. While the pieces do hang on the wall, the works are sculptural. The pulp that forms the works may appear two-dimensional, but the pieces have both painterly and spatial qualities.  

Combining nods to art history and institutional architecture, Scanavino creates distinct experiences through playful and expressive ideas. To see his most recent work, Scanavino's upcoming show at Klaus von Nichtssagend opens the gallery's season this week.      


This Artist Will Make You See Linoleum in a Whole New Way - Photo 1 of 4 - Installation view of exhibition at Klaus von Nichtssagend Gallery in 2013. 

Installation view of exhibition at Klaus von Nichtssagend Gallery in 2013. 


This Artist Will Make You See Linoleum in a Whole New Way - Photo 2 of 4 - Dead End, 2015. Installation at the Bronx Courthouse. 

Dead End, 2015. Installation at the Bronx Courthouse. 


This Artist Will Make You See Linoleum in a Whole New Way - Photo 3 of 4 - Paper pulp pieces were included in an installation of VCT-clad sculptures at the Armory Show in 2016. 

Paper pulp pieces were included in an installation of VCT-clad sculptures at the Armory Show in 2016. 


This Artist Will Make You See Linoleum in a Whole New Way - Photo 4 of 4 - Installation view of Scanavino's upcoming show, which opens this week in New York. 

Installation view of Scanavino's upcoming show, which opens this week in New York. 

David Scanavino's latest exhibition at Klaus von Nichtssagend is open from September 9th—October 16th, 2016   

Cover photo by ©Andrew T. Warman