Picnic by the Wayside

”Sebastian Hosu’s second solo show at the Anca Poterașu Gallery invites to an artistic discourse on the visual exploration of the relationship between human and nature.”

Sebastian Hosu

Curator: Rafaela Bîrlădeanu

July 1 – August 1, 2023

Anca Poterașu Gallery, Bucharest

Experimenting with various artistic techniques such as oil on canvas or wood and dry charcoal on paper, the new artworks on display depict closeness and distance in the perception of the connection between human and non-human. In his artistic practice, Sebastian is interested in the connection between the human being, movement and landscape. His inspiration for the figurative is drawn subjectively from his personal archive of photographs, depicting Berlin in the 1960s and 1970s, where presences anchored in the past reflect the blurring of boundaries between human beings and nature, creating an organic relationship.

Picnic by the Wayside proposes a posthumanist approach to the interaction between human beings and nature, by eliminating the hierarchies established between them. In the artworks exhibited, the relationship of interdependence and unification with nature is emphasized through a balance between the abstracted figurative and its decomposition amplified by movement. The artist plays with human presences on canvas, either blending them into the landscape, leaving only fragments of the body visible, or outlining them almost entirely, dominating the visual field.

The compositions amplify the connection with nature and bring to the fore a collective memory charged with nostalgia, in which the boundaries imposed by the nature-culture phenomenon, as defined by Donna Haraway, no longer exist: the produced divisions that have tended to dissociate people and nature, to the point of excluding them from the natural environment.

Sebastian Hosu, The Fire Within
Sebastian Hosu, The Fire Within
Sebastian Hosu, The Back of a dancer

The selection of oils, charcoal drawings and works made by hybridizing the two media create visual metaphors of human and natural coexistence, highlighted by the intensity of the vibrations in shades of green, blue and pink, contrasting with the dry charcoal. Thus, the impact on bodily perception is magnified in relation to the large-scale artworks, creating a tangible visual experience that oscillates between tension and the thrill of realising that we are part of nature.

The vertical and horizontal overlaps, which intensify the compositions, provide the dynamism and vitality through which the viewer is absorbed in a colourful and powerful universe. Attention is directed both in the pictorial space and in the viewing process, transforming us from mere observers into self-reflective presences. In this way, his works reflect a double tension of fragility: human and natural.

His works reflect a double tension of fragility: human and natural.
His works reflect a double tension of fragility: human and natural.
Sebastian Hosu, Meet Up V
Sebastian Hosu, Picnic by the Wayside III
Sebastian Hosu, In the Open IV

You can download the curatorial text below.