There is nothing simpler than a monochrome mark on a white piece of paper, and yet this simplicity is profoundly deceptive. The essential act of mark-making can come to embody deep meaning and complexity which is made more remarkable when the simplicity of the foundational gesture sits as a constant reminder on the surface, free of superfluity.
To define drawing is an elusive task. If it is dry media, why do most categorisations include ink? If it is monochrome, where does pastel fit? To define it in opposition to other practices, such as painting, sooner or later shows up inconsistencies, necessary overlaps, that render the division inadequate. If the procedural and gestural are prioritised, it soon intersects with performance.
In Drawn to Carbon, the focus is on drawing as a fundamental act and the selection is purposefully monochrome; it is a paring down to the essentials, to the carbon atoms that are the building blocks of life and drawing.
All the work on display pullulates with life, be it observed, fragmented or imagined. What is clear in every piece is that it exists as finished work. These are not preparatory drawings, or steppingstones taking us elsewhere. Each creates a three-way path between the represented, the hand and the mind. This triangular unfolding is made more complex when the viewer becomes part of the network and is invited into the process of constructing meaning.
The selection is not based on a reductive thematic focus, nor on homogenous styles, rather it rests on work that shows internal coherence in the pictorial language each is built upon. The human being’s fascination with making marks on walls resonates as a driving force, as does a need to be rooted in the world. This engagement can manifest itself as direct interaction with the lived experience, by suggesting emotional responses in and from the work, or by creating new parallel narratives that function as metaphors.