Nicolas Sanhes began studying at the École des Beaux-Arts in Perpignan in 1984, when he discovered his first museum, the Musée de Céret. During his studies he was quickly enticed by the radical positions of artists such as Ellsworth Kelly and Ad Reinhardt, who pushed the contradictions inherent in art to the brink.
He used tar to create artwork during the early phase of his career. This experience led him to sculpture and other radical art forms, the latter itself becoming the subject of his artwork.
Nicolas Sanhes built on his first works, which he called ‘sculpture-tools’, and little by little created the formal principles of repetition and modules still evident in his work today. Sanhes’ first explorations in sculpture were characterised by straight-line sculptures expressing a new relationship to the ground, itself becoming a part of the work.
Nicolas Sanhes began creating larger-size works in 2004, which allowed him to accept his first public commissions. The ‘HV11’ piece he created for the town of Valenciennes in 2013 is his most complex work to date.