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Artist Spotlight – Eric Hibit

Eric Hibit
Bird of Paradise with Bather 
Acrylic on panel 
Eric Hibit Bird of Paradise with Bather 30x36 Acrylic on panel 2018

Anti chromophobia and pure decadence: The paintings of Eric Hibit.

In David Batchelor’s book, chromophobia – he writes about the fear of color in western philosophy and art criticism. Bright colors, he asserts have been viewed as primitive and not civilized – even wild and dangerous. Color he writes, also speaks of the cosmetic, the queer and the feminine. We all know inherently, these things are not weak or bad – but there is a sense that color can marginalize the seriousness of things – particularly architecture, fashion and even painting.

Eric Hibit
Cake with Slice
30×36 in on panel

All painting surfaces are a facade – they are an illusion. Color, shape and form skate the surface and the artist’s attempt to trick or direct attention is the ground work for contemporary painting at large.

Exuberant, generous, sweet, mystical and decadent – are adjectives that come to mind when I consider the work of New York based artist and curator, Eric Hibit. As is true in most great paintings, photos of the work do not entirely do it justice. Eric is a thoughtful and hard working painter who’s painting chops are on full display in his most recent body of work. His subjects speak of history, culture, architecture, and beauty – they sit confidently in exemplary decisions of color and compositions. They urge me to think of the oriental and of ‘the other’ in a sneaky way – they trick me with their shine and glow and nearly perfect paint application.

Eric Hibit
Yellow Anthurium
16×20 inches
Acrylic on Panel

Crisp yet elusive light reflections, repetitive dots and strategic color blocking create a nuanced way to absorb these paintings. At first things seem clear because of the way forms and figures are delineated with such flat color and crisp outlines. Upon closer look comes the interferences, the surprises and the detailed texture you can’t see from afar.

Color is often cosmetic – it hides things and some think it obscures the truth. These philosophies of color are the pillars of books like chromophobia and part of the reason I think Eric’s work is about so much more than a slice of cake, a flower or a crystal.

Eric Hibit
Purple Cloudy Oyster
Acrylic on Panel
16×20 in

Sometimes in art, subjects are the content – but in Hibit’s careful and thoughtful approach to painting, color choice and sometimes provocative combination of subjects he eludes to much more. His work can’t be simplified or pushed aside, work like this is not made easily and his decisions have a voice brighter than the magenta and yellow he uses. Provocative subjects paired with the everyday bring to mind sexuality, domesticity, pleasure and even lust. Bright, clean, crisp, and optically dazzling this work is complex, relevant and enduring.

Eric Hibit
Crystal Pinecone Butterfly
30×36 in. On panel

Eric Hibit’s work his work can be found:


Instagram: @erichibit