Rounding up the best gallery shows across the United States each month, Galerie traveled from New York to Chicago and Los Angeles to assemble the top solo shows for December. From Jocelyn Hobbie’s paintings of hyper-realistic models at Fredericks & Freiser in New York to Tony Matelli’s gravity defying sculptures at Nino Mier Gallery in Los Angeles, these are the not-to-be-missed exhibitions this December.
A gifted painter best known for her realistic portrayals of idyllic women wearing bold patterned outfits while posing in lush floral settings, Jocelyn Hobbie’s dreamlike portraits have been stopping viewers in their tracks for years. Hyperrealistically painted, her enigmatic depictions of young female subjects are inspired by New Objectivity, a 1920s German art movement that rebelled against expressionism though impassive portrayals of people, and the rich layered patterning of Ukiyo-e, a genre of Japanese art highlighting female beauties that dates back to the 17th century.
However, Hobbie takes these studied influences to new levels of engagement and expertise, as witnessed by the 20 works on view in “New Paintings and Works on Paper,” her fifth solo show with the gallery. Capturing rosy cheeked, sensual yet dispassionate subjects as objects of the viewer’s gaze, the Brooklyn-based artist creates a tension between her art and the audience—raising questions about how our notions of beauty continue to change even as the objective way it is portrayed remains nearly the same. Through December 10.