Wednesday, 4 April 2012
, Museum of Modern Art W in Macynthlleth there is currently an exhibition of sculptors’ drawings until the 5th May. Disegno, as it was c ales alled by its curator Stephen West, aims to demonstrate the role that drawing plays in the creation of 3 dimension al work for some artists. I was invited to include some of my drawings from my sketch books and a piece of work.
Drawing is something most of us do if we go to school. It is something that most of us stop doing when teachers, or friends and family, tell us that we aren’t doing it correctly, because it doesn’t look anything like the thing we are trying to draw. Some of us are either stubborn or become addicted to the process, or both, and continue to draw as adults. According to my mother, it was
always easy to keep me happy as a child with a scrap of paper and a pencil. The only time I ever remember being even slightly discouraged was when my drawing of a Labrador dog made my father laugh because he said it was a dead ringer for Gener al de Gaulle.
At art school the foundation of everything we did was the sketch book. We were encouraged to carry it everywhere and to use it daily to record anything and everything.
But the fact that the ever present book would occasion
ally be scrutinised by our tutors, meant that, for me, it became a self conscious activity. It was something that needed to be done in the right way, in their eyes ….whatever that might be, and I was never re ally sure.
It wasn’t until nearly 10 years after graduating, when I started making baskets as opposed to cane sculptures, that drawing suddenly took on a whole new meaning for me. Basket weaving is slow work, requiring a heavy investment of time, so I began to use drawing to resolve aesthetic and technic
al problems in order to avoid having to undo hours of work. I have not stopped drawing since.
I use graph paper for emotion
al and practic al reasons. The expensive black bound sketch books we were encouraged to use at college terrified me; I never felt that any marks that I might make in them could improve such perfect white paper. Graph paper makes no such demands and can help with sc ale. My sketch books have also, with time, become v aluable to me as diaries and records of work.
For the first time in 30 years I have put a sketch book on public display, and I am now worried that having done so may inhibit me again, as the tutors scrutiny did then. But just possibly, it may be that I have fin
ally grown up enough to not worry about what other people think about my sketch book. I re ally hope so.
You can read more about the exhibition here.http://www.momawales.org.uk/?page_id=384