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Indepth Arts News:

"Barnaby Hosking / MATRIX 155"
2006-03-02 until 2006-06-04
Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art
Hartford, CT, USA United States of America

Barnaby Hosking/MATRIX 155, the first solo exhibition in the United States by the London-based artist, is being presented by the Wadsworth Atheneum Museum of Art, March 2 - June 4. In his American debut, he is showing two recent works: Snow Painting (2005) and Reclining Figure (2005). Since graduating from the Royal College of Art in 2003, Hosking has won accolades for his video installations about the making of art-painting, sculpting, or sketching-that include the actual completed work whose creation is seen in the video.

According to Joanna Marsh, Associate Curator of Contemporary Art at the Wadsworth Atheneum, "This pairing allows the painting, sculpture or sketch to assume a life of its own, separate, yet intimately connected to the persona of the artist. Hosking poses an elegant tension between the process of making art and the finished piece."

Marsh finds that the role Hosking plays in his videos is reminiscent of the Romantic view of the artist as heroic, autonomous, and inspired, yet subject to physical, emotional, and intellectual ardors. For instance, Snow Painting, created on the coast of Norway's Nordkapp peninsula, the northernmost point in Europe, documents the process of painting a snow-covered landscape en plein air. Easel and canvas in toe, Hosking treks across the Arctic terrain in search of the perfect vista. "The results of his epic sojourn, a series of monochromatic white paintings, simultaneously recall the tradition of 19th century landscape painting and 20th century minimalist aesthetics," Marsh says.

Reclining Figure examines the traditional practice of modeling and casting sculpture. While depicting the process of bringing a female figure "to life" in clay, and immortalizing her in bronze, it also explores the intimate relationship between an artist and his model. The video was shot in near darkness and is projected onto a black velvet screen, a surface that "softens the pixels of the image and intensifies the blacks," according to the artist.

Barnaby Hosking was born in Norwich, England in 1976. He has participated in several international group exhibitions, including Northern Light at The Rubell Collection, Miami; Expander at the Royal Academy of Arts, London; and New Blood at The Saachi Gallery, London. In 2003 he was awarded the Credit Suisse Bank Prize.

Barnaby Hosking
Reclining Figure, 2005.
2 Elements: Digital video
projected onto black velvet screen;
Sculpture: cold cast bronze.
Courtesy the artist and
Max Wigram Gallery, London.
Photo: Francis Ware, London.

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