Aesthetica Art Prize:
Hyperreal Painting

Hyperrealism is an art genre that emerged in Europe and the USA during the late 1960s. It is characterised by paintings and sculptures that mimic the aesthetics of photography through painstaking attention to detail and extreme precision. Here we introduce five artists from the Art Prize whose works depict everyday objects, vast landscapes and close-ups of the human body in a realistic manner.

Christopher Stott, 2020

Christopher Stott produces clean representational oil paintings that transform vintage objects into icons. The artist depicts a variety of antique items including appliances, books, clocks and typewriters, amongst other common instruments. As subjects, they have a built-in narrative – they tell stories. Turning them into painting creates an intimate experience which asks the viewer to slow down.

Andrew Leventis, 2021

Freezer Box (Vanitas) and Refrigerator (Vanitas) are from a series that considers vanitas in a modern-day circumstance, which came to light when the pandemic hit the globe in March 2020. The works reflect on the mass panic induced by the Covid-19 virus – and also upon how the idea of “stocking up” became crucial and almost primal as a response. In the traditional sense, these vanitas allude to themes of plague, desperation and loss. Presently, the artist finds elements of vanitas in everyday surroundings, from foods to the other items stocked bountifully in the refrigerator and the freezer.

Constance Regardsoe, 2021

Constance Regardsoe has a longstanding fascination with water, and uses it to express ideas of time and impermanence. The intricacy of the patterns of light and water in her paintings speak of transience; a brief split-second sooner or later in the captured source image would alter them radically. The the fleeting moment that is captured in each of Regardsoe’s paintings juxtaposes with the time-consuming painting process she employs, and the moment is painstakingly recreated over weeks.

Anne Moses, 2022

The human form has always intrigued Anne Moses. The face and body encompass a universal recogni­tion of emotion and sensuality seen up close with detailed observation. Moses believes that we have an innate response to the mimetic representation of our own image. Working in layers of transparent colour and oil glazes, she executes larger than life images that deal with fragments of life seen on the micro level: the portrayal of an elusive touch or feeling; the detail and micro minutiae of life.

Michelle Osman, 2023

“Today abstraction is no longer that of the map, the double, the mirror, or the concept. Simulation is no longer that of a territory, a referential being or substance. It is the generation by models of a real without origin or reality: a hyperreal.” (Jean Baudril­lard). Michelle Osman is known for producing oil paintings of storm clouds that eddy and churn over narrow slices of land, as well as figures set in unu­sual settings, dressed in surreal costumes. These works are a de­parture point for the imagination.

Image credits:

1. Michelle Osman, On the Rise (2020). Oil on canvas. 101.6cm x 193cm.

2. Christopher Stott, Ampro Precision Projector. Oil on canvas, 30in x 36in. Courtesy of the artist. 

3. Andrew Leventis, Freezer Box (Vanitas), (2020). Oil on linen. 121 x 91cm. 

4. Constance Regardsoe, Trapped Light, (2020). Oil on linen,100 x 100cm. 

5. Anne Moses, Closed (2021). Oil on canvas, 50cm x 50cm x 2cm.

6. Michelle Osman, Nevada Sky Bird, oil on canvas, 30 x 45, 2021. CK Contemporary