Inspired by transcendental philosophy and the timeless romanticism of myth, Hosking’s works are conceived as liminal fields: metaphysical dimensions in between cognition and unconsciousness, physical and ephemeral, positive and negative, time and space. From the poetic austerity of his paintings to his sophisticated video and light installations, the notions of surface (its inherent duality and hidden depths) and perception are crucial. Whether canvas or screen, Hosking’s two dimensional platforms become site-specific terrains of wonder and contemplation: provocations where binary opposites conjoin and merge sensuously through formal construction. Themes of masculinity and femininity run harmoniously throughout Hosking’s new works in their powerful meditative tensions.
Central to the exhibition is Hosking’s pivotal film installation Galatea, titled after Pygmalion’s famous sculpture-come-to-life. Projected onto a black velvet screen – a recurring device in Hosking’s work, symbolic of a masculine sense of freedom – Galatea poses 90 minutes of unedited footage of Harumi Klossowska, Balthus’s daughter, sitting in a garden: a living legend/sculpture/painting. It’s only the subtle shifts in light or momentary fluctuations of breeze in Klossowska’s chosen feminine surrounds that interrupt the guise of artifice;
the fixating spell of Hosking’s modern day muse becomes simultaneously heighted and belied by evidence of her exotic actuality. These ideas of seduction and illusion are continued in Eros and Agape, a large scale installation comprised of potted wild flowers and a six panel articulated velvet screen designed in the tradition of Japanese Byobu. Intensely spotlit, the shadow of the flowers projected onto the screen takes on the characteristics of an expansive landscape, a poignant articulation of beauty exceeded by its simulated merging of opposite psychological tendencies
Less images than manifestations, Hosking’s Thoughts (Butterfly) paintings are sumptuously delicate fields of pale hue, fluttering brass wings cutting into the aluminium panels. Their simple paradox – the allusion to nature’s delicacy rendered in hard metal, deflection of minimalism’s logical objecthood, and sly denial of the elementary function of surface – is deceptive in the magnificence of their effect. With Zen-like perfunctory Hosking’s bare opposites amalgamate, magically, as a totality of everything: all that is humble and fragile, fleeting and muted, culminates as nothing short of the purely sublime.
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