Hong Kong Open Printshop curates ‘Flight of Fancy’ exhibition by Professor Stephen Hoskins
‘Flight of Fancy’ presents a range of prints on paper by Stephen Hoskins, Professor of Fine Print at the CFPR, as well as two of his printstallation works. The three-dimensional flying machines shown in Hong Kong until the 12th March 2023 combine a variety of aesthetics with the results of his research on print technologies.
Hoskins is the founder and professor at the Centre for Print Research at the University of the West of England, as well as a pioneer in the study of traditional print techniques and state-of-the-art print technologies.
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Since the beginning of time, humans have dreamt of flying, creating flying machines of all shapes and sizes at different times throughout history. According to Greek mythology, Icarus flew with a pair of wings attached to his back with wax. In China, legend has it that during the Spring and Autumn period (circa 770–476 BC), inventors Mozi and Lu Ban made a wooden kite that could be kept in the air for as long as three days. And Liu Bang, the founder and first emperor of the Han Dynasty (circa 256–195 BC), had paper kites flown during battle to surround and confuse enemy troops. Leonardo da Vinci was also fascinated by flight, studying the gliding and flight of birds and designing a number of flying machines. The actual realisation of the dream of flying began with the successful take-off of the Wright brothers’ Wright Flyer in America, leading to our ability to cruise in the stratosphere and propel ourselves into the infinite universe.
Flight of Fancy presents a range of prints on paper by Stephen Hoskins as well as two of his printstallation works. The three-dimensional flying machines in the exhibition combine a variety of aesthetics with the results of his research on print technologies. For his flying machines to soar, the artist has to combine materials that are both delicate and resilient with appropriate print techniques and a streamlined form. Hoskins is the founder and professor at the Centre for Print Research at the University of the West of England, as well as a pioneer in the study of traditional print techniques and state-of-the-art print technologies. He also established IMPACT (International Multi-disciplinary Printmaking, Artists, Concepts and Techniques), the international printmaking conference series that has had a profound influence on the revival of contemporary print art, as well as research on print technologies and their applications. Hoskins’ works are in public and private collections at the Victoria and Albert Museum, the Tate, Microsoft and Lloyds Bank.
Allowing kites to break free and fly away is a Lunar New Year tradition in some Asian countries, symbolising “out with the old and in with the new”. By curating the exhibition Stephen Hoskins: Flight of Fancy, the Hong Kong Open Printshop would like to introduce audiences to contemporary research on print technologies and their applications, and offer everyone the chance to soar with the wind in the coming new year!