Rosemary Holliday Hall: Encyclia Imagosis

Friday, Jan 10 – Feb 22, 2020

1709 W. Chicago Ave.
Chicago, IL 60622

Paris London Hong Kong is pleased to present Encyclia Imagosis, a selection of new sculptures by Chicago/Los Angeles artist Rosemary Holliday Hall. The exhibition opens on Friday, January 10th with a reception from 5-8 PM and remains on view through February 22nd, 2019.

On the one hand, Encyclia Imagosis reads like a spell, and on the other the scientific discourse of taxonomy. Encyclia Imagosis stems from Greek, enkykleomai, “to encircle”, imago, imagination’s root, and osis, a suffix denoting a process or condition. Encyclia Imagosis casts a spell on categorical fixity. It proposes a cyclical destabilization and refashioning of imagination’s role in the processes of transformation, like a child’s incantation challenging the malaise of taxonomy.

The Codex Seraphinianus is an illustrated encyclopedia of an imaginary world, created by Luigi Serafini, written in a self-invented alphabet. It contains hundreds of hybrids, imaginary and strange beings: a horse transforms into a cocoon, a bird’s nest sprouts legs with yellow sneakers, lovers become a crocodile. Each undergoes metamorphosis, creatively overcoming bodily limits. Many real creatures are stranger than imagined. The caterpillar, for example, encases itself in a chrysalis into which it releases enzymes that digest its own form, liquidating its’ tissues. Only structures called imaginal discs survive, able to reorder the larval soup into a new being. Through this process of imagination, caterpillars push themselves into a different future, the confines of their chrysalis paradoxically enabling their flight forward into the unfamiliar, just as imagination does for other species.

Encyclia Imagosis consists of four human scale oxidizing chrysalis sculptures. They mark an evolutionary world, where objects are process and forms are dynamic patterns creating symmetries, hybrids, mutations. Through an embodied exploration of the possibilities of reorienting both personal perception and cultural convention, Encyclia Imagosis investigates various ways we make sense of the world and relate to ourselves and others through imagination, metaphor, and material. 

Rosemary Holliday Hall (b. Los Angeles 1990) received her BFA at the University of California, Davis in 2013 and her MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2019. She lives and works between Los Angeles and Chicago. Her work has been shown in exhibitions in Chicago, Los Angeles, Saugatuck, Sacramento, and London.

Hall has received national and international grants, awards, and residencies which include (forthcoming) Global Forest Artist Residency (Germany), Ex.Change Artists and Scientist on Climate Change Grant (Chicago), Art Science and Culture Initiative Collaborative Research Grant (Chicago), Ox-Bow School of art Fellowship (Michigan), Vermont Studio Center Residency, Dumfries House Residency (Scotland), The Jan Shrem and Maria Manetti Museum of Art Royal Drawing School Fellowship (London).