Ephemeral materials – resurrected from the garbage – scavenged, collected and assembled – lie mostly concealed under the works of NKO. A collection of hundreds of works ranging from a few inches square to wall sized canvases are hung salon-style in the artist's otherwise austere, scrubbed apartment. The show represents a year's worth of work – of remembering and forgetting – of walking a little too far into impermanence and finding the way back.
This body of work is an elegantly cohesive whole. Every piece is made up of the distinctive loops and lines of the artist's handwriting. Multiple lines of writing overlap into an indecipherable lacework of pattern, but sometimes there is a single, lingering word – as though the artist's mind suddenly slipped into a temporary quiet.
There is a certain urgency and determination enfolded into these works. Just over a year ago NKO suffered a brain injury in a bike accident. While past work , as explained by the artist, was about forgetting, this work is more about remembering and exploring what endures, if only a little longer, than the present. The artist deliberately records this stream of consciousness on impermanent materials, cardboard and reclaimed papers, the decay of which is the true support of these works made up of layers of calligraphy obscured by paint, written over with another rush of words, then in a thoroughly unexpected move – gilded. Rough patches of gold leaf or words written in gold transform the works from simple recordings of a man's progress from injury to recovery into sacred icons of the transitory nature of life.