Drawn In, Drawn Out, Drawn Round

1 - 12 October 2009

An offsite exhibition at National Theatre Wales

Alistair Owen, <i>Half A Box</i>
Alistair Owen, Half A Box

The blurring of the boundaries of drawing with performance, digital media and video is only new in that these tools themselves belong to newness. The idea of drawing is an inherent part of our ability to understand, as old as mark making itself. Drawing and its myriad forms are imbedded in our ability to learn about what we can do. The blank page is covered by a child in colouring crayon in order to understand direction and fullness, trajectory and containment. The works in this exhibition, by some of Wales’ most promising recent graduates, explore space through something that is perhaps like drawing.

Sharon Crew’s video work observes an interplay and blurring between the fictional and the constructed. The works often contain an element of poetry bound up within the constructions of low-fi documentary filmmaking. Circular Thoughts is about meandering thought. It’s passing the time. As in a child-like wonderment at the world and the repetition one encounters within it, Crew’s fingers trace out her thoughts of a circle, another circle and yet more circles. Rhythms and tempos build as the world is mapped out and understood through the hand/eye/lens relationship.
Alistair Owen’s Half a Box is another enactment of space. A loosely sketched drawing in ink of half a cardboard box is mapped onto the artist’s hand. The hand serves as a stand-in for a missing sheet of paper for impatiently jotting down an idea that has suddenly sprung to life. By subverting the traditional technique of writing on the back of the hand and instead sketching on the palm, the half-promised illusion of the drawing is completed by the action of simply closing the palm of the hand.
Containment and expulsion are both at play simultaneously in Jessica Hunziker's Bubblegum Bubble. Perched at mouth height, this captured moment of blowing a gum bubble is rendered in bronze, fixed forever as an expulsion of the artist’s air, rendered inadequate and impotent of the normally inevitable pop. Through traditional sculpture Hunziker defines an area of space, inside and out, that would be occupied by the artist’s activity of day-day life; breathing. The work is a frozen moment of a potential repetition, a breath drawn out.

Through a variety of drawing the artists here are ultimately dealing with the performative action in the realisation of the work, whether in them initiating it or for us to conceptually complete it. A drawn line on a page always delineates space, this side or that side. The drawn lines in each of these artists’ works draws out more than a side, they draw what is within, what is out, and of course like all good drawing everything that is (a)round.

This show was curated by
  • Sean Edwards
    • Jessica Hunziker, <i>Bubblegum Bubble</i>
    • Sharon Crew, <i>Circular Thoughts Also</i>
    • Alistair Owen, <i>Half A Box</i>