April 24, 2009

Sleeping Figures

I am exploring a new use of my materials with this group of figure studies.

About a year ago I began collecting scraps of paper and cardstock to use as painting surfaces. Instead of using them as I found them, I ended up stockpiling them and continuing to work on canvas until about four months ago.   At that point my library of found paper took up almost a quarter of my studio space, and as I went through it, I ended up discarding a lot of the cheaper cardboard pieces, and the flimsier papers.

The prize of the collection was a stack of wheat colored archival paper that had served as the dividers in a portfolio of Donald Judd drawings I was framing at work. The graphite/charcoal drawings I have posted here recently were done on this paper, but recently I have been looking for an approach that would create a greater range of values while still showcasing the color of the paper.

 I returned to this motif of a sleeping figure over several days as I introduced myself to these new materials. The technique of laying down a un-modulated white shape, before dropping in a layer of shadow, and finally the line work, lends itself to a study of gesture. In imagining the postures in the studio, I found it satisfying to re-experience the rhythms of oversleeping. 


Erin Lee Gafill said...

I really like these drawings, and the description of your process of gathering materials for a purpose that it actually took you months to execute. I also like the images of sleeping (or oversleeping) as I am very sleepy right now myself.

Tom said...

These images are compelling and arresting. I love to see your work and your process.


Tom said...

OK, one more thing. There is an artist on the street in Soho who paints and draws on found paper. Images of figures on inserts from beverage cases etc.

I saw and purchased his work a couple of years ago. He seemed like an amalgamation of a street artist, a busker and a bum.

Last year I went back and saw him once again selling his work on Prince Street, but he seemed to have gotten himself together and found an audience (I wanted to say hi, but couldn't break through the crowd.)

I think you would like his work.