Nicholas Hatfull

Selected works by Nicholas Hatfull

Nicholas Hatfull
Nutrition Highlights (Different Toucan)

2009

Oil and acrylic on canvas

250 x 190 cm

“For my work I scavenge images from everyday graphic sources; I have a big collection of pizza and cereal boxes. The boxes sit around the studio and I like the idea of importing their imagery to my canvases and re-exporting them in painting space. The bird figure in Nutrition Highlights is taken from Toucan Sam, the mascot for Froot Loops. I alter the images to make them my own by stretching, reconfiguring, and reinvesting in them. All my work has a strong relationship to metaphysical painting. I’m interested in artists such as De Chirico. De Chirico title phrases like ’The Mystery and Melancholy of...’ are highly suggestive; I search for metaphysical tones in my source material - an alternate title for this painting might have been ’The Enigma Of A Toucan’. My work uses things which are everyday, but also have a sort of joie-de-vivre. I tend to work in a state where rarefied art and commercial vernacular are confused. I like the idea of pitching something into the painting to give it a new life or buoyancy.”

Nicholas Hatfull
Sunday Forno (One More Toast Then The Bill)

2010

Oil and acrylic with screenprint on canvas

250 x 190 cm

“Sunday Forno... is my newest painting in this group. ‘Forno’ is Italian for oven: it’s a place where you insert raw material, fire it, and cook it, and I was thinking about this in relation to the way I make my paintings. There’s a repeated image of a sculptural head that appears to be smashed or fragmented, and images of bowls. These are consumed by red Cy Twombly-like scribble which I think of as fire. The flame forms come from the idea of the oven. I like how it relates to surrealist and metaphysical paintings where fire is used symbolically. In this painting, the blue and black scribbled lines have a function: they’re like painting tropes or tendencies, and I use them to bridge classic painting with everyday graphics. These lines hit a lyrical or expressive note in Sunday Forno... it looks like smoke, but also steam coming off the motifs. That’s the main inspiration for this work: a motif ready to put in the oven, to use or distribute, to give off steam.”

Nicholas Hatfull
Melonebidone (Forno By The Sea)

2009

Oil and acrylic and Froot Loops on canvas

250 x 190 cm

“Matisse is an important influence for me. He condenses form so much; his paintings have a feeling of joy and ease about them that I try to capture in my own work. This sense of leisure is coupled with a perverse or sinister feeling that comes from simplifying standard life imagery to these elided forms. In Melonebidone... there’s an image of a strange building with a big leaf washed up on the beach and there are two actual Froot Loops stuck to the painting’s surface which look like shells or pebbles. I started with the yellow and green beach ball which was inspired by a melon in a late Matisse painting. ‘Melone’ is Italian for melon, and ‘bidone’ means ‘trashcan’ but is also slang for a footballer who was bought for a big transfer fee but flopped. I like this idea of promise and failure in relation to my work: it has both an excitement and flatness to it.”

Nicholas Hatfull
Like Carra Sings

2009

Acrylic, gouache and crushed Froot loops on paper

69 x 50 cm

“My compositions are prepared beforehand, and I often work from collages or quick doodles. Like Carra Sings is a small work on paper. It’s a collage and there are crushed Froot Loops glued onto it that look like sand. Froot Loops are this really bland empty oat filler that have vitamins added to them, and I think of them as an analogy for painting: adding a moment of vivid nutrition to a homogenous base. Sometimes the images are relatively bland and I agitate them to give them more life or levity.”

Nicholas Hatfull
Superbidone Pizza Delivery

2009

Oil and acrylic on canvas

250 x 190 cm

“I think of my paintings as akin to opening a can of soda: there’s a gasp of the effervescent but you know it’s going to go flat. I use flat things and they go flat in the painting, but my job is to add nutrition or levity – that’s why the handling is quite breezy and colourful. A lot of my imagery is affected by graphic connections, they’re quite two dimensional with large coloured in areas. For Superbidone Pizza Delivery I was looking at Matisse’s Le Bonheur De Vivre. The bouncy-looking trees come from dog food packaging and they reminded me of Matisse’s foliage. The brown cloud was developed from imagery of milk splashes. Everything has rhythmic shapes, and there’s a feeling of academic landscape. I was thinking that making a painting is like trying to deliver a motif, so there’s a pizza dropped in at the bottom...delivered. There’s also a small one half behind a green tree in the middle. The red dots at the top right are tomatoes.”


Other Resources

artfacts.net
Additional information and images – Nicholas Hatfull

karstenschubert.com
Karsten Schubert, London

thewallisgallery.eu
Nicholas Hatfull approaches painting as a kind of transit zone, where the transmission of motifs into the immersive space of the picture is to maroon them in limbo.