Kim Cogan: Here Nor There @ Hashimoto Contemporary, San Francisco
Hashimoto Contemporary is pleased to present Here Nor There, a solo exhibition by San Francisco- based painter Kim Cogan. For his latest collection of paintings, the artist depicts a vision of the city that is both lived-through and longed-for.
With fluency and warmth, Cogan ruminates on his connection to the city and what it means to have a sense of place during a time of isolation and distance. Substituting discovery with
longing, the artist is drawn to places long established and frequently visited, yet still somehow remaining out of reach. Vacant, boarded up storefronts, dismantled landmarks—these spaces beckon vividly even as they seem to shut us out.
Cogan’s process is fluid and spontaneous. Definition emerges over layers of broad brushstrokes. Colors blend and transform over time, illuminating images into view. He elects to idealize, with his expressive use of light and tone, places that hold special meaning, as in the painting Edge of the World where vintage cars transport viewers to a nostalgic state of mind, as do hazy street corners and city skylines. While dream-like, Cogan’s work is also haunted by the urgency of reality.
Portraying the emotional relationship between time, place and memory is central to Cogan’s work. While isolation caused by the pandemic has separated the artist’s connection to his city, it has also sharpened his creativity into something more vivid. As the geographer Yi-Fu Tuan wrote, “Here is a seeming paradox: thought creates distance and destroys the immediacy of direct experience, yet it is by thoughtful reflection that the elusive moments of the past draw near to us in present reality and gain a measure of permanence.”