“Transparence is the highest, most liberating value in art – and in criticism – today. Transparence means experiencing the luminousness of the thing in itself, of things being what they are.”
Black; Drawings is an ongoing series that aims to liberate the artist and the viewer from the desire for artistic or visual novelty, and invention of new forms. Avoiding metaphors, narrative or interpretation as well as signature, subjective gesture or stroke, allows the drawing, the object (of art), to fully exist as “the thing in itself.” My movements and senses are in direct subordination to the materials (black oil stick and paper), which are the simple and essential driving force of the drawing.
This new series of drawings stemmed from a decision to shed all (artistic) ego and pretense, and become vulnerable. The drawings are not about space, shape, or color. They are not about abstraction, or composition. They are about drawing, the process, as well as the simplicity of the medium making a mark on the surface.
When making these drawings, I use a systematic, simple movement, always starting from the top left corner. I decide arbitrarily from the beginning whether to draw across, left to right, or top to bottom, or as much vertically as horizontally. The drawing continues systematically until the medium is exhausted; then, the drawing stops. The medium (and the amount of medium that I have on hand, usually anywhere from 1 to 3 sticks) and the surface determine the development of the drawing, how the surface will be altered, how much or how little texture, and therefore how much intricacy or complexity the drawing will have in the end. The color black was chosen as being the absence of something (light), while the paper (Mulberry) was chosen because of its susceptibility to change and alter under each drawing medium. I use only one type of drawing medium (oil stick or oil pastel), in as different variations as I can find. Each brand of oil pastel completes one drawing. The rough edges have been left, as well as the imperfect cut of the paper. Setting up limited options for a drawing in order to free it from the pressure of innovation matches the artistic desire to strip the work bare of all artifice and become vulnerable, open, and surprised.
Black; Drawings intends to exorcize the desire for annexed meaning, explanation, or relevancy, and to shed the questioning of function or place of a work of art. The drawings must in the end be self-conscious, self-referential, and point to nothing but themselves as objects. The series is a shift in practice and approach, and a revolving process of renunciation.