Fast forward to Wine’s debut solo show at Limoncello in 2012, which threw critics a curve ball. A raised walkway reimagined the gallery as a Japanese Zen garden, the floor covered in gravel and Wine’s immaculately finished objects—basket structures, slathered in glaze; other pieces round, humpy or hive-like. He already evinced an obsessive care in the craft of making, something he often describes in spiritual terms. “You are somehow reflecting your psychological and social position in life at any given moment,” he says of his relationship with his material, though this sentiment informs everything he does. “I spend a large part of the day in a studio alone, which I love, don’t get me wrong. But it is therapy.”
If introspection is the key to his production process, then the BALTIC show saw Wine’s gaze turn further inwards. In an accompanying video produced by the gallery for the show, the artist talks through the finishing touches to his 2014 self portrait Young man red eating dinner—a Calder-infused ceramic and steel mobile depicting Wine’s studio workwear of red vest, cap, shorts, shoes, and mug of tea plus pasta dinner. The piece and others within its series appear as if a puppet version of the artist. And in the various iterations, Wine is seen eating, working, or choosing what to wear.