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Gilles Combet grew up in Paris and London during the 70s. Taking art classes at the Ecole des Arts Decoratifs while students were taking over the streets, he ended up dropping out of school, turning his back on a middle class upbringing and apprenticing himself to the Compagnons du Tour de France, an ancient craft guild dating back to the Middle Ages.
"Combet is interested in exploring the symbolic value of common shapes and objects familiar to our environment. What is the whole breadth of our experience when going up and down the stairs? He will stitch together a model-size staircase out of recycled cardboard and hang it from the ceiling as a mobile. Through size reduction, material disconnect and improbable repositioning, the initial object depicted elicits a reappraisal of its initial significance. One might then be inclined to revisit the core relationship that one naturally develops with his/her surroundings. In another piece, Combet creates a curtain made of cutout disembodied hands drawn on tracing paper. The loosely assembled work invites tentative reading while evading any easy interpretation."