drawing: by various artists

30 may – 27 june 2015

Fried Contemporary is pleased to present a new exhibition of drawing by artists including Angus Taylor; Eric Duplan; Cobus Haupt; Dylan Graham; Wayne Barker & Nandipha Mntambo; Bronwyn Lace; Alexandra Ross and Marcus Neustetter.

The theme of the exhibition is inspired by the medium itself. What do the medium and the act of drawing refer to today? The meaning of drawing has perhaps been in a state of flux for a while. From using pencil or charcoal on paper in the traditional sense, to using more advanced technologies by incorporating different media and elements not usually associated with it.

For a lot of artists, throughout history and perhaps even today drawing is the beginning of everything. It is the starting point from where inspiration takes them to sculpt or paint. It is the means by which ideas are jotted down, doodles and notes are created. Drawing is perhaps the most fundamental of skills, certainly for art students – it doesn’t matter what field they end up in. Printmakers, textile designers, painters, sculptors, video artists, performance artists and any other form of visual art draws inspiration or ideas from some form of drawing or note-taking. Of course technology (specifically the use of computers and photography) have taken a lot of the fundamentals away, they no longer need a pencil in order to write down ideas or make a quick sketch. Artists are now using wire, stitching and even paint to ‘draw’ with. They are using the medium as source material and inspiration.

This exhibition aims to reveal some of these changes, and hopefully add to the dialogue surrounding the medium. For example, Bronwyn Lace uses stitching as a medium in her drawing, incorporating objects such as fishing hooks. Angus Taylor’s drawing is made from 6mm mild steel: bent and shaped to form a line drawing of a female figure. It is also the structure he uses to cast a sculpture of cement and stone. Eric Duplan uses ink on paper, drawing grid-like shapes over what appears to be written notes from a diary. Dylan Graham and Cobus Haupt have both implored more traditional approaches to drawing. Graham’s drawing is titled: ‘Black book’, also in ink. The book is an object he often uses in his paintings. Interestingly, the book is a compilation of all of Hitler’s speeches he has ever made in public. The text is not legible, there are two black squares where the text is supposed to be. It is as if Graham purposefully blotched out the words so that the book becomes an object rather than a source of information. Haupt’s drawing, titled ‘Helena’ is a portrait of one of the models he sculpts from. He admits that he is more at ease using clay to render his models than using charcoal on paper. Nonetheless, the expertise with which the drawing is executed is clearly visible: the portrait is flawlessly sculpted. Wayne Barker has collaborated with Nandipha Mntambo to create an expressionistic, graffiti-like drawing using various coloured paints, blackboard paint and chalk. The title, ‘Studio work’ perhaps refers to this collaboration, as the artist says: ‘She’s my neighbour, I would like to collaborate more with other artists, it makes sense’.

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