Bohdan Hostiňák, A Step into the Void

Bohdan Hostiňák belongs among the generation of authors, which appeared in the national art scene in the...

O-2123 Hostinak

Article Inventory No O-2123

Autor: Bohdan Hostiňák
Work Title: A Step into the Void
Year of Origin: 1997
Technique: oil
Material: canvas
Dimensions: 78 x 78, 5 cm
Marked: unmarked

Oil on canvas titled A Step into the Void can be perceived continually among other works where the author blends together the landscape topic he has developed since the late nineties and the motive of animals and small insects, which appeared in his works right at the beginning of his career in the early nineties. The painting presents a fragment of natural setting with three elementary motives – the sky with clouds, a bare branch of a tree and a tiny caterpillar balancing on its edge. The story takes place within this compositional constellation referring to existential and liminal situations in nature, which symbolically refer to the whole universe. The painting reflects on a complex principle of being and although it thematically focuses on the animal world it touches upon human existential problems. Its title A Step into the Void is a significant interpretation source assisting us when considering the liminal situation of “stepping into the void”. The author also worked with the same motif in a tiny watercolour painting. Depicting similar situation, however with six caterpillars, the plural of caterpillars corresponds to the title change Steps into the Void (1997). Both variants are a part of a longer thematic cycle, where the author repeatedly uses a bare branch combined with the motive of small animals – caterpillars, lizards and spiders.

Bohdan Hostiňák belongs among the generation of authors, which appeared in the national art scene in the nineties of 20th C. Since the very beginning of his career he has exclusively devoted his art to painting even though his contemporaries are strongly influenced by digital media. Painting is, however, for him not only the tool of a simple self-reflection but it also assists him to take a position to the world. The characteristic sing of his painterly strategy is to work in open cycles where he repeatedly presents natural environment and classical landscape genres where he searches for links between cultural archetypes and symbols.

Bohdan Hostiňák was born on September 18, 1968 in Svidník. In 1983 – 1989 he studied at the Secondary School of Applied Arts in Kosice, Department of Conservation. In 1991 -1997 he studied at the Academy of Fine Arts in Bratislava in the Open Studio lead by Professor Rudolf Sikora. His work was included in crucial national (20th C – History of Slovak Visual Art,  SNG, Bratislava, 2000) and foreign exhibition projects (Check Slovakia!, Junge Kunst aus der Slowakei, Berlin, 2004; The New Ten, Künstlerhaus, Vienna, 2004, PitoreSKa – Wannieck Gallery, Brno, 2007). He had solo exhibitions in the Jan Koniarik Gallery under the curatorship of Vladimir Beskyd (2006 and 2010). Abroad he participated in exhibitions Landscape (Václav Špála Gallery, Prague, 2001) and The Cult of Paradox in the prestigious Zamek Ujazdowski gallery in Warsaw in Poland (2002, together with Marko Blažo and Miloš Kopták).

Barbora Geržová

This acquisition has been supported using public funds provided by the Ministry of Culture of the Slovak Republic.