Massimo De Carlo in Hong Kong is pleased to present LOVE POWER, a new solo exhibition by Jim Hodges, the second with the gallery, and the first presentation of Jim Hodges’ work in Asia.
The exhibitions presents five new works that use some of the artist’s signature materials such as glass, 24 karat gold leaf, acrylic on linen, and linked-together metal chains forming spider webs: that are icons within Hodges’s career which spans over thirty years. The subtle allusions to natural landscapes (such as the sky, the reflections of water, the outline of trees and flower petals) are translated into abstraction. The meticulousness of the materials urges the viewer to intimately interact with the work up-close. In fact, many works focus on our perception of time and gravitate towards scenes of transformation.
Jim Hodges is well-known for orchestrating movement between works in relationship with the space and between each other. The often-marginalized corner is here used as a focal point, and the works cannot be seen altogether at the same time, but each one links to the next. Vibrations, and echoes appear in different intensities. Using poetic gestures, seemingly simple materials are used to transmit emotions and draw attention to the passing of time and ultimately to mortality. For example, 24 karat gold is a material that changes its luminosity with the time of day, and despite its fragile thinness can endure outdoor weather and will not decay. There are gestures that affirm and gestures that deny. The three paintings on linen form a loose trilogy, progressing with subliminal symbolic colors from black, to black and gold, to gold and white.
The exhibition also brings together several important innovations. For the first time, two contrasting metals are present in one of the largest spider web works to date: 9 black brass webs simultaneously conceal and reveal 8 gold webs underneath (the first spider web piece was made in 1989). This is also the first time that gold leaf has been overlaid on a black field painting. In 2009, smaller works from this series using paper were part of the retrospective at the Centre Pompidou, Paris (which traveled to Fondazione Bevilacqua La Masa, Venice and Camden Art Centre, London). The gold leaf paintings originate from an intuitive drawing practice that is then traced. The sharp and perfect symmetry in All Days as One represents a sort of constant or promise. However, the automatic mark making in the black acrylic painting Door of was is more mercurial. From the door of was (through) provides an in between. This thread of a dual nature evokes ideas of truth and denial, love and loss, identity and hope. These new works by Jim Hodges were conceived over a two year period, and realized specifically for the audience in Hong Kong.