Hannah Quinlan & Rosie Hastings

Text by Dean Kissick

I first met Hannah and Rosie at their London gallerist’s wedding in the English countryside. We were sat at one of two tables reserved for friends from the art crowd. They took a lot of pictures on a disposable camera, and later that evening they DJ’ed together and everybody danced.

Just before Christmas that year I saw two of their colored-pencil drawings at NADA Miami. The top panel of each showed a couple’s faces, and the bottom some drinks on a table. The way the drapery of a sweatshirt is drawn out in rose cangiante, how the champagne sparkles in its glowing flute, is quite extraordinary.

“We were drinking Blowjobs—shots made of Bailey’s and Cream that look like an exploding dick,” reads a screen from their latest film, Gaby. Club music pounds from the speakers. Their New York gallerist says he was dancing around the gallery throughout the show.

In the film, their best friend Gaby tells a story about fucking a straight-acting, 6’4 blond policeman when he was 18. They meet in the toilets of a gay bar in Soho. They go for a three-course meal and then to see Titanic. The policeman still lives with his family and hasn’t come out yet. One day they go to his house and have sex on his brother’s bed. Eventually Gaby calls it off and they never speak again. Not a perfect romance. But nothing ever is.

On the walls of Queer Thoughts was a series of graphite drawings titled “We Haven’t Spoken Since.” I went to their opening and my friend Stefan, who’s very strong, told me that he liked how strong everybody looks in the drawings. Everybody’s broad and muscular. They dance and feel one another up and drink and talk long into the night. Outside the windows the city is dark. I remember that evening Rosie’s hair was gelled and curled in perfect waves, without a line out of place, just like their drawings. The backgrounds are always completely and meticulously shaded-in so that the whole room seems to tremble, so that the whole world appears charged with joy and possibility.