Drawn to the Real brings together five contemporary artists whose work is united by the medium of drawing. For all these artists drawing is not a means to an end, a quick sketch or a preparatory study, but is the culmination of many months of work. Whilst drawing is not necessarily their sole means of expression, it is a central part of their practice and vision.
Each artist uses the medium in a detailed and precise way. Although they are working within a figurative framework, they are not attempting to replicate by hand the detail and patina of the photographic image. Rather they are interested in issues of documentation, representation, scale and the process of drawing.
Miriam de Búrca will present a series of new works, Deconstructing the North. De Búrca engages with her own experience of the persisting divisions in her homeland of Northern Ireland by documenting the wildlife and plants inhabiting the grounds of Crom Estate, a former Anglo-Irish estate. Her intricate, detailed drawings accentuate the transformation of a place with a fractious history and the conscious effort it takes to recall and understand its past and present.
Jane Dixon’s drawings reflect a continuation of her interest in the relationship between the real and the artificial. Her boxed earth drawings form part of her Model Series; studies of architectural or museum models. In this case resin casts of soil and glass boxed earth specimens are the subject. These drawings combine surface rubbings from the physical world with pure invention. Dixon is interested in the idea of a model being a representation of something which is either an authentic representation of the real thing or the 3D embodiment of an imagined object.
Often presenting his drawings in sequences, Richard Forster’s practice is a documentary approach to time, process and sense of place. For Drawn to the Real he will present a brand new triptych of pencil drawings, meticulously created with his own photographic images of seascapes. Forster revisits the same section of beach, from the place of his birth in the north-east of England, time and time again to capture the shifting tide.
Marie Harnett’s work is inspired by cinema. She makes small, intricately detailed pencil drawings which capture fleeting moments of drama, suspense or beauty. When released from the original context of the film that inspired them, the drawings each establish an alternative narrative of their own. For this exhibition she will show a new series of drawings based on the movie American Hustle.
Landscape is a central concern in Emma Stibbon's practice. Her work emerges through her practice of walking and gathering research ‘in the field’, often drawing from observation and using the camera. Back in the studio she constructs large-scale drawings based on this site research often using fragile drawing media such as chalk on blackboard or volcanic ash on paper. Stibbon is drawn to locations that are in a condition of flux or change, that are connected by their sense of scale or drama. Her underlying interest is focused on how the apparently monumental can be so fragile. In Drawn to the Real, she will be showing new large-scale drawings based on her visit to the Antarctic in 2013.