Recent Work II
Tea as a Gestural Rite of Passage:
A Preview of "Tea Passages"
In Tea Passages, Hopkins recycles leftover tea from his daily tea drinking and transforms it into a painting medium by deftly applying it with gestural strokes on watercolor paper. Using a variety of techniques, Hopkins regards his method as a “process approach” to painting. As Hopkins explains:
“I enjoy how my ritual of drinking tea seamlessly flows into my process of painting with tea, and how preparing and applying tea as a painterly medium feels as natural as making and drinking tea.”
While bearing the most visible influences of Chinese culture, Tea Passages also reflects the natural outgrowth of Hopkins’s history of working with process approaches. Of his process works, Tea Passages feels the most organically genuine — especially in terms of how Hopkins recycles the byproduct of his tea drinking directly into his studio practice of painting. Such economy of means makes for an intoxicating blend of rituals — a sustainable “feedback loop” that links his daily nutrition with organically-made paint and a dynamic process of art making
As for what may be brewing in Hopkins’s next round of Tea Passages, we can only wait and see as they become available here. Now, being served for your viewing pleasure...
See Tea Passages Gallery. (Coming soon.)
Scratching Beneath the Surface:
A Preview of “Microcosms”
Microcosms is a series of digital photographs of various surfaces, such as stainless steel, tree trunks, glass windows, and concrete ledges, which are respectively entitled: Mirrorscapes, Treescapes, Windowscapes and Ledgescapes. Using only his iPhone camera, Hopkins is able to discover otherworldly landscapes by adjusting the warm and cool tones of what are ordinarily monochromatic surfaces. According to Hopkins:
“I enjoy seeking the uncommon in common things — to discover the unseen beauty that resides just beneath the surface of the everyday world.”
Hopkins’s process of combining digital-photography with the natural forces of nature creates an exciting hybrid — a blending of technology with the earth shaping energy of nature, such as wind, rain and sun. For this reason, Hopkins sees these images as metaphors for how we weather life’s various elements. And although their abstract patterns are organically designed by nature, Hopkins’s technique of saturating their warm and cool tones often transforms their appearances into fantasy or dream-like landscapes. Such use of color in Microcosms seems to dramatize how imagination can empower us to transform everyday life through creative energy.
Photographing the Big Picture:
A Preview of “Macrocosms”
Macrocosms is the flip-side of Microcosms — a series of digital photographs that capture the world-at-large in order to explore the world-within. Hopkins divides his project into a trilogy: Skyscapes, Naturescapes, and Lifescapes. Unlike Microcosms, this body of work offers more realistic and easily identifiable subject matter. As Hopkins explains:
“They are often quiet observations, inviting the viewer to pause and reflect on the simple beauty of everyday scenes and their potential narratives — contemplative settings conducive for inner reflection.”
The majority of these images originally appeared in his online-blog, Journal, and were paired with personal writings and favorite quotes. Offering meditations on art and life, they also form an ongoing series entitled, Seeds of Wisdom for Creative Energy.
Undeniably, these images have an introspective quality that inspires both contemplation and creativity — a resting place for expanding our inner space where, indeed, “the sky is the limit...”
See Macrocosms Gallery for prices. (Coming soon.)
Sifting Through The Flotsam and Jetsam:
A Preview of “Inner Navigations”
Inner Navigations is a series of intuitively derived contour-line drawings that reveal Hopkins's sculptural background, as well as his improvisatory search for new forms. Characterized by indeterminate structures that seem to float in perpetual suspension, their 3D dimensionality suggests "systems" of various origins, and the potential "chaos" inherent in such a multiplicity of systems. According to Hopkins:
"From interstellar systems to molecular systems, life is comprised of a multitude of systems we navigate on a daily basis — ranging from the banal to the sublime, from the unconscious to the transformational.”
Occasionally, though, these systems collide, triggering states of confusion and mixed reactions -- "sparks of chaos" for some people may actually be "sparks of creativity" for others. And for Hopkins, in the world of creativity, there is no such thing as "chaos" -- only "creative chaos".
In Inner Navigations, for example, we encounter technological-looking images that flip back and forth between their appearance as "tools" or the "subject" of such tools. This open-ended interaction between "subject" and "object" also resonates with the paradoxical relationship between the "subjective" and "objective" in quantum physics. It is precisely this open-ended gap of interpretation that provides the space for "creative chaos".