Michael Hilsman

Michael Hilsman's work integrates and expands upon the formats of classical painting, in particular the genres of portraiture and still life. Through incorporating elements at once ambiguous and curiously emblematic—plants, shells, and feathers, pieces of clothing, body parts—Hilsman has developed a visual vocabulary that oscillates between naturalism and expressionism. His paintings hint at the artistic exploration of the absurd, the latent spirituality of things, and the relationship between the physical and metaphysical. Often inscribed with words or titles on the picture plane, his compositions offer quasi–theatrical backdrops for objects and figures in states of dissolution and fragmentation, either on the brink of disappearance or formed anew.