In the first floor gallery space, Richard Hawkins presents an installation of two new groups of work, the Collage Paintings and the Gesture Paintings. Bruce Hainley has written an essay to accompany this exhibition titled “Kouros by Yves Saint Laurent”.
“[…] The painting operates as a codex-machine about a history of painting and art-making, Hawkins’s own but also the medium from modernity to now, and each of its pictures synchronizes various hot points or flashes in that history. I.e., Axl Rose suggests Appetite for Destruction or Use Your Illusion as imperatives for how to begin considering the pictures assembled, which is to say, more than an example of what it means to be head-banging, a dialogue between destruction and illusion, a dialogue at the core of collage, modernism’s rowdiness, and these paintings’ facture (arranging the boys like so many flowers in a vase, removing them, painting around them, on top of them, revising or scrapping the result until some prime stasis is achieved). Morandi’s still lifes provide a commentary on the solitary artist returning again and again to what fascinates him, however many times and in however many manners he’s already depicted it (them). The Greco-Roman hunks, an insistence on lust as a foundational impulse of and/or raison d’être for art-making; classical fundaments; figuring out what a body is and what’s to be done with it; cram session on the relation between things and people, people as things. […]”
Excerpt from Bruce Hainley, “Kouros by Yves Saint Laurent”, 2018