In his practice Philip Metten freely moves between the respective media and regimes of sculpture and architecture, purposefully suspending disciplinary differences. Bringing together sculpture, drawing, interior and building design with kaleidoscopic intensity, the artist develops a visual language that espouses future with prehistory. As he draws upon references from ancient sculpture, modernist and postmodernist architecture, to science-fi film and experimental cinema, Metten presents us with works that can be read as either mask or architectural model, heraldic sign or urban topography, ancient emblem or futuristic insignia.
A daily drawing practice serves as the systemic foundation of Philip Metten's work. It engenders the basic schemes for his sculptures, prints, and wall reliefs, as well as for larger architectural projects, such as his solo show at Z33 art space in Hasselt, BE, Innercoma, 2010, the much-praised renovation of a bar in Antwerp, BE, Bar, 2013, the scenography for a group show in Extra City Kunsthal, Antwerp, BE (The Corner Show, 2015), as well as for the facade of the Kai Matsumyia gallery in New York (153. Stanton, 2015). Most recently in Netwerk Aalst (2016) the artist showed a preliminary stage of ESSEN, an interior design for a restaurant in Borgerhout (BE) that is currently being constructed and will open its doors in 2018. ESSEN sees Metten returning to a drawing made in 2008, which he implements both sculpturally and architecturally while using the specific space of the prospective restaurant as his point of departure.