DRAW – an exhibition featuring artists associated with the Royal Drawing School, of exciting diverse work which pushes boundaries only discovered through time spent exploring the medium of drawing.
DRAW brings together work from 40 artists for whom drawing is a fundamental practice. Ranging across subject-matter and media, each of the drawings is the result of a situated act of seeing, an encounter with a landscape, a street, or another person.
We are so used to ceding the making of images to the mechanical eye of the camera, that we forget that our ability to make and read photography is itself entirely reliant on our primordial capacity and need for images that come directly from the body. If a photograph is something secondary, an optical trace abstracted from lived experience, a drawing is a primary experience, an event that takes place in time and space in which the whole self is involved.
Far from being a question of the application of a neutral ‘skill’, this universal ability to transmute the visible world that surrounds us into another order of visibility is nothing less than a fundamental mystery of our incarnation, our being-in-the-world. Every drawing, however modest, is an event within the visible.
Drawing is a leveler. Away from the habitual strategies of our ‘studio practice’, faced with something that demands to be drawn, we are all naked. All our knowledge, our past experience (of our skill, of the qualities of the materials we are working with), is insufficient if we are committed to discovering something genuinely new, and not merely confirming what we already know. To draw well implies an acceptance of the unknown – a surrender to and thinking through the resistance of materials, as well as a concomitant faith, a trust that through this very surrender, something will happen.
Susan Bacon, Josephine Birch, Matthew Booker, Meg Buick,
Mark Cazalet, Michael Chance, Michelle Cioccoloni,
Joe Davis, Constanza Dessain, Oscar Estevez, Douglas Farthing,
Paul Fenner, Bobbye Fermie, Christabel Forbes, Julie Held,
Tyga Helme, Aude Hérail Jäger, Kate Kirk, Frances Mann,
Elizabeth McCarten, Coll McDonnell, Rachel Mercer,
Francesca Mollett, Max Naylor, Tim Patrick,
Stuart Pearson Wright, William Pierce, Elvira Rose Oddy,
Geraint Ross Evans, Anna Rumsby, Melissa Scott-Miller,
Ivy Smith, Lottie Stoddart, Thomas Treherne, Jo Trench,
Anna Tveritinova, Tara Versey, Chris Wallbank, Jevan Watkins Jones,