Paul Elliman

Paul Elliman, QUERTY_PE, 2012. Image courtesy the artist.

Paul Elliman, QUERTY_PE, 2012. Image courtesy the artist.

Paul Elliman (b. 1961, London, UK) lives and works in London. His work follows language through many of its social and technological guises, in which typography, human voice and bodily gestures emerge as part of a direct correspondence with other visible forms and sounds of the city. Elliman is a visiting tutor for the MFA Voice Studies programme at the Sandberg Institute in Amsterdam.

Paul Elliman has been gathering letter-like objects for his provisionally titled Found Font since the 1980s. Connecting typographical language to the shapes and fabric of the world around us, the work consists of things that can be found almost anywhere: at home or at work, in department stores and supermarkets, in factories and city streets. Readable messages emerge from what at first appear to be arbitrary scatterings of industrial debris. For Liverpool Biennial 2018, Paul Elliman has worked with Sara de Bondt and Mark el-khatib on the Biennial’s graphic identity using letters and symbols from Found Font. Elliman’s practice takes the concept of language production in different directions, backwards to the origins of language in the speculative shapes and materials of exuberant daily life, and forwards through a typography of spent rubble and broken mechanical parts.

He has exhibited widely in venues such as the ICA, London, UK (2014); New Museum, New York, USA (2008); Tate Modern, London, UK (2001); and MoMA, New York, USA (2012) with recent solo exhibitions at KW Institute for Contemporary Art, Berlin, Germany (2017); and La Salle de Bains, Lyon, France (2017). 


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