September 23 - November 6
Jocelyn Hobbie's new lushly patterned, meticulously detailed paintings are looking glasses into the inner lives of her exclusively female subjects, depicting psychologically and sexually charged portraits of her imaginary cast of novelistic heroines. Hobbie's jewel-toned compositions solicit the viewer to gaze upon exquisitely considered--and again exquisitely rendered--details of feminine allure: the fashion, the accessories, the make-up, the jewelry, the fabrics, the textures, the contemporary tattoos and other artificial charms. But the female gaze is always turned away, distant in its own reverie. These unreturned glances deflecting ours to uncertain places, are pregnant with ambiguous ruminations, challenging the viewer to fill in these ellipses with his or her own narrative developments or explanations that are only suggested by Hobbie's open-ended clues.
Although Hobbie's compositions frequently conjure up generalized suggestions of an eclectic range of art historical inspirations--Balthus, Degas, Renoir, Hopper, Magritte, Otto Dix, and even Lucas Cranach come to mind--this uncanny feeling of dˇja vu is simultaneously destabilized by the artist's assiduous commitment to devising all of the mise-en-scene herself: all of her heroines' elaborate fashion details--including extremely stylish, idiosyncratically patterned outfits appointed with scarves, sashes, necklaces and other accessories--are all entirely of Hobbie's invention. Of particular distinction is the large, floral printed blouse trimmed with fur and lined with brass buttons in Acadia (2010). Similarly, the artist's Old Master-type paint handling of diaphanous fabrics bejeweled with sumptuous, luminous effects as in Pilgrim (2010) and H.C. WestermannÕs Girlfriend (2010) may conjure up the gauzy, luminous craft of Lucas Cranach, or a girl's rouged cheeks and day-dreaming, doughy visage in Adventurers (2010) and Daisy (2010) may evoke the viewer's general memory of Renoir's world. But consistent with her uncanny knack for rendering the familiar unfamiliar, none of Hobbie's compositions--and none of her elaborate artificial infrastructure--is specifically based on, or drawn from, particular antecedent images or photographs.
Ultimately, Hobbie's finely tuned compositions, foreshortened spaces, and stylized backgrounds suggest the artifice of stage sets for a cast of dramatis personae. Looking glasses into the internal lives of fictional heroines in search of a drama or, perhaps, an ending, Hobbie's novelistic tableaux are also a hall of mirrors where fictions of the past elide with newly invented fictions.
ENTRE NOUS is Jocelyn HobbieÕs first solo exhibition in New York in four years and her first at KS Art, New York. Other solo exhibitions include: Turin, Italy -2008; Bellwether, New York -2006; Jack Tilton Gallery, New York -1997,1995. Hobbie lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.