Category Archives: expanded animation

Rosary Drawing XII, 2015

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[Rosary Drawing XII performance, rehearsal in studio, Birgitta Hosea, 2015]

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[Remnants from Rosary Drawing XII performance, Birgitta Hosea, 2015]

This work was developed by Birgitta Hosea during a residency in a former convent in Atina, Lazio, Italy that was organised and curated by Rekha Sameer.

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Although brought up aetheist, Birgitta Hosea spent the entire residency drawing her recently deceased and much mourned Swedish grandmother’s broken rosary beads and trying to learn more about the Catholic faith of her mother’s family.

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The more she drew, the more she began to think about about both of her grandmothers, one Swedish, one Scottish, and indeed about all of the women who work tirelessly and selflessly for their families: invisible labour that is taken for granted and forgotten about.

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[Image by Chris Simpson, 2015, cropped]

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By the 12th drawing, she decided to use the tools and materials of domestic cleaning to make a drawing of the rosary beads – scrubbing away the paper to create the highlighlights on each bead. As the antique Roman floor was too delicate to make a performance using scouring on, out of the the many drawings she had made, at the final exhibition she chose to only show these.

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[Rosary Drawing XII, Atina Residency exhibition, Palazzo Ducale dei Cantelmo, Atina, Italy, 2015]

For Hosea, this work captured everything she had learnt on the residency – that the actions of cleaning and the time taken to scrub each piece of paper could be recorded in a sequence of images that ressemble a filmstrip.  Like a filmstrip, the rosary is also a device to record actions over time – the prayers that are supposed to be said for each bead. So for her, this work is a type of animation.

Asked to submit experimental animation for Beyond Noumenon, an exhibition and forum at Sichuan Institute of Fine Arts in Chongqing, China, she submitted a proposal to perform this work as a piece of live animation and, to her surprise, was accepted with great enthusiasm and generosity by curators Tingting Lu and Tianran Duan.

She then performed the drawing at the private view next to other wall-based sequential images she had made. Scrubbed clean of all makeup, on her hands and knees, she said invocations while going through the rosary beads and scrubbed one piece of paper for each bead on the string.

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[Rosary Drawing XII performance, Birgitta Hosea, Sichuan Institute of Fine Arts, 2016]

Following this exhibition, she performed the work again at 51% Remember Her, a group exhibition of feminist art curated by Rebecca Feiner at Tower Gallery, London.

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[Rosary Drawing XII performance, Birgitta Hosea, Tower Gallery, London, 2017]

Click here to view the 51% Remember Her catalogue: 51%_Catalogue

This work then became part of her solo show Erasure, at Hanmi Gallery, Seoul, Korea in 2018. View catalogue here.

Interview about the show by Studio International.

Footage of the show (silent) with video documentation of Rosary XII performance at the private view:

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Drawology

Drawology, an exhibition curated by Deborah Harty as part of her research project, ‘Drawing is phenomenology’ at the Lanchester Gallery, Coventry, featured work by Maryclare Foá and Birgitta Hosea who exhibit their collaborative work under the name Foá + Hosea.

The exhibition catalogue is now available online here.

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Foá + Hosea, Traion IV (Coventry), (2014, digital drawing loop, 30secs)

In the old British expression, ‘being sent to Coventry,’ an individual who is present is ostracised by others, in effect ignored as though not present. The phrase may have originated around the 1600’s when civil war Royalist soldiers who were sent to Coventry were ostracised by the parliamentary population there. As part of their Traion series, Foa+Hosea examine and mark this sense of absent presence in a new piece of work created specifically for Drawology.

In the Traion series, Foá+Hosea respond to the myth of the first drawing, in which Butades’s daughter traced the outline of her lover’s shadow on the wall to hold on to his memory before he left on a journey. Foá+Hosea engage with this dilemma     – the impossibility of attempting to hold time – through fixing their digital shadows in place with animation. In the title of the series, the words ‘trace’ and ‘motion’ are merged to reference their process of drawing over film, in which evidence of presence and motion is traced.

Being not present yet maintaining some evidence of presence references Emmanuel Levinas’s idea of absence and presence. Levinas observed how those who no longer exist bodily in the world, leave behind them a physical evidence of their presence. As Derrida in his re-reading of Levinas tells us, ‘ He will not have been (a) present but he will have made a gift by not disappearing without leaving a trace’ (Jacques Derrida in Re-Reading Levinas, 1991)

Traion IV (Coventry) brings to this scenario of ‘being sent to Coventry’ a constructive retelling. On a train journey Foá+Hosea while literally sending themselves to Coventry, attend to, rather than ignore, each other’s presence. Tracing their physical selves as they travel, they also record the journey itself as seen in the passing landscape. In the work, the absence of a presence is drawn into an animated trace, not ignoring but celebrating the non presence through documenting the motion of those no longer there.

SEeAFAR: 27th Sept – 5th Oct 2014

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Fresh from the Folkestone Triennial Fringe, this touring exhibition curated by Birgitta Hosea brings together new work from Foa + Hosea, Carali McCall, Anne Robinson, Sarah Sparkes and Thurle Wright. Using a range of media – drawing, animation, performance to video, light installation, painting and collage, the works engage with living with the constant presence of an absence through the metaphor of waiting for someone to return from sea.

OPEN FROM 12-6pm on: 27th, 28th September and 1-5th October

PRIVATE VIEW: Friday 26th September 6-8pm – if you would like to attend – register for the Private View on Facebook or EventBrite

[Invite image Jane Conquest Rings the Bell (detail) Sarah Sparkes, mixed media, 2014]

SEeAFAR: 29-31st August, Folkestone Triennial Fringe

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Taking place in a former waiting room for the Folkestone ferry, SEeAFAR features six artists – Foa + Hosea, Carali McCall, Anne Robinson, Sarah Sparkes, Thurle Wright – whose work manifests absence. Through drawing, painting, installation, performance and moving image, these artworks recall the perspective of generations of women living in a state of unknowing as they wait for news or the return of loved ones from overseas and explore the tensions between anticipation and memory, separation and speculation.

Join Facebook event by clicking here.

Traion I (Ferme)

Dans Ma Cellule, Une Silhouette, 1st February – 20th April 2014, Centre d’Art Contemporain, La Ferme du Buisson, Noisiel, Paris

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Maryclare Foá and Birgitta Hosea were commissioned to create a new piece of work for this exhibition inspired by the legend of the first drawing told by Pliny the Elder. In this apocryphal tale a Corinthian maiden, whose name is not recorded, traces a line on the wall around the shadow of her lover as he is about to depart. Her father, Butades, a potter, fills the outline with clay and fires it in his kiln.

This action of Butades’s daughter, in which she attempts to freeze time and contain presence, is seen by many art historians as the foundational act of Western painting and drawing.

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This exhibition curated by Lore Gablier for La Ferme du Buisson features the work of different artists who use drawing to investigate the visualisation of absence, loss and desire. Artists included are: William Anastasi / Abdelkader Benchamma / Mathieu Bonardet / Geta Brătescu / Maryclare Foá & Birgitta Hosea (Performance Drawing Collective) / Jean Genet / Dennis Oppenheim / Santiago Reyes / Till Roeskens / Carla Zaccagnini.

Here is the English translation of the text by curator Lore Gablier about the exhibition:

I have the shape of a dead man on the wall of my cell. He’s been in his grave almost five years now, yet his shadow still lingers. He was no one and nothing. All that remains of him is a handful of old rape charges and a man-shaped pencil sketch. Perhaps it’s just superstition, but I can‘t help but feel that erasing it would be like erasing the fact that he ever existed. That may not be such a bad thing, all things considered, but I won’t be the one to do it.

 – Damien Echols, Life After Death

(Damien Echols was sentenced to death by the state of Arkansas in 1994 after being wrongly convicted of murder at the age of 19. He was released from prison in 2011)

Offering an exploration of drawing in its relation to gesture and the body, the exposition Dans ma cellule, une silhouette turns to the story of the daughter of the Corinthian potter Butades who, before her lover left on a long journey, “drew an outline of the shadow of his face as cast by the light of a lamp.”  If this seminal act, as told by Pliny the Elder in his Natural History, has come to be considered as an allegory for the origin of drawing and painting, it is, at the same time, an invitation to renew our relation with the visible.

Through her act, the young woman refers us to that which remains invisible in the visible  in this instance her desire, which cannot reconcile itself in the image. What we see is, as such, always inhabited by the absence of what we cannot see, an absence that not only structures our vision, but also allows the advent of a potentiality or, as Jean-Luc Nancy explains,  “the indeterminate possibility of the possible as such, a potentiality of being [pouvoir Ítre] that is not the abstract form of a being that remains to be embodied, but is rather itself a modality and a consistence of being: a being of power [Ítre de pouvoir], the reality of momentum, of birth and beginning.”

Freed from the gaze and returned to a physical act, drawing opens up a multiplicity of forms and potentialities, as the works brought together for this exhibition testify. Drawing becomes alternately the inscription of a gesture, a repeated action or constraint, a narrative support, the means of a tactile exchange, the boundary of a theatrical space. Or else, drawing hallows itself out, empties itself, by erasure, comes to life. In each case what drawing reveals is the body itself: a body that lends itself less to being active, efficient or operative, than it does to a momentum through which it releases its sensuality.

Set_up

Birgitta Hosea setting up the work with the help of Anne Pietsch, Lore Gablier and the technical staff at La Ferme du Buisson.

SpaceView2Traion 1 (Ferme) 2014 (Maryclare Foá & Birgitta Hosea)
Material: Mixed Media (Graphite on paper, projected animation, chalk)
Dimensions variable

Artists Statement: 

Just as Butades’s daughter traced the outline of her lover before he left on a journey, so we (Foá & Hosea), following the same method, tracing round the shadows of our bodies cast by the electrical light onto the paper surface, attempt to hold time by fixing our shapes in place.

The multiple lines in this Traion (trace of presence in motion) also attempt to hold motion while leading into the gestured animated outlines of our digital shadows.

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Drawing Animation

November 2010 Issue Animation Interdisciplinary JournalDrawn Together’s work is featured in Birgitta Hosea’s  article ‘Drawing Animation’ in the Drawing Interdisciplinary Journal. Click here to read the abstract: http://anm.sagepub.com/content/5/3/353.abstract.

Drawn Together featured in Iluminace

Illuminace coverDrawn Together were recently featured in Birgitta Hosea’s illustrated essay, ‘Performativity, Post-animation and How I Became a Cartoon Character’, in which she presents the expanded animation elements of the group’s work. This was translated into Czech and included in the animation issue of Iluminace, a Czech film journal. This issue was aimed at challenging conventional notions of animation.