The FLAG Art Foundation is pleased to present Drawn Together Again on view February 23–May 18, 2019 on its 10th floor. This survey of contemporary drawing focuses on the intimate act of drawing by hand through the variety of traditions and practices artists employ. The exhibition of over 120 artists eschews themes and categorization, instead including an intentionally broad artist list to show the strength and dynamic range of contemporary practice.
At the heart of the exhibition is a fifty-foot-long salon wall that brings together unexpected dialogues between multi-generational artists with a range of backgrounds and training—from outsider artists, to those with expansive careers, to classically taught students and alumni from The New York Academy of Art, chosen through an open call. Monumental unframed drawings by Dawn Clements, Marlene McCarty, and Jenny Saville punctuate the exhibition and bring a heightened physicality to what is often thought of as a more intimately-scaled medium. Robert Longo’s large-scale, hyperrealist graphite drawing of Albert Einstein’s paper strewn desk looks deceptively like a photograph, while Ewan Gibbs starts with photographs of iconic tourist sites and celebrities and through his meticulous process, effectively blurs the familiar into abstraction.
Lauren Seiden’s three-dimensional, undulating graphite wall work fuses the vocabularies of drawing and sculpture to create a form reminiscent of welded metal. Conor Backman, Natalie Frank, Robert Morris, and Robert Rauschenberg also expand upon the traditional definition of “drawing”—often thought of as a dry on dry medium—through the use of collage, gouache, and watercolor, while Aurel Schmidt integrates more unusual elements, including AriZona Lemonade, Orange Crush, Grape Crush, Diet Pepsi, and cigarette burns. Though a variety of subject matters are represented in the exhibition—including geometric abstraction, still lifes, landscapes, etc.—portraiture has the dominant presence, though executed though a tremendous range of styles by artists such as Will Cotton, Ben Durham, Toyin Ojih Odutola, Elizabeth Peyton, and Jim Torok. Cartoons and text-based works give artists a platform to inject social commentary, as well as humor into the show, including R. Crumb, Pope.L, and David Shrigley.