They take logos and incorporate them into their own work, creating bootleg merchandise enabling them to become part of the brand and own it without buying products. Their work embraces the notion of iconic forms being manipulated and simplified for advertising. In a world where we see hundreds of adverts a day, yet look at them for just a few seconds, the drawn image is pared down to a recognisable symbol which can instantly conjure the required emotions. Donald’s drawing plays on this idea, using a scroll to evoke feelings of fairy tale stories, princesses and folklore characters.
For this exhibition Tilson focussed on the drawing as a finished work rather than a preparation for one of her paintings, thus giving the drawings space and an open, fresh feel. They follow Warhol’s Do It Yourself aesthetic; one work boldly showing a Sims building whilst another outlines layer upon layer of fashion pattern prints.
Donald’s highly technical and intricate drawings with repetitive brick pattern, mimic sample designs for a knitted garment such as a Missoni jumper or a woven tapestry. His drawing of Pinocchio shows the famous character with a Gucci print repeated across the puppets chest. Donald works meticulously to create drawings through algebra.
Both artists have a clear perception of the image they want to draw and recreate giving a flat, pared down, unfussy feel. The images often evoke feelings of times past – the glory days – be that Italia ’90 or the dawn of motoring. The drawings have qualities of these days, but have gone through a process of Chinese whispers and are not exact replicas of these times. Tilson’s drawing with an Italia ’90 ashtray brings back memories not just of a venerated England football team but of Italy in general, green, white, red, the Colosseum, gelato all stereotypical motifs of Italy. Together Donald and Tilson adopt society’s idealised views of history and culture which has often been created by advertising for ease of communication and encourage the viewer to reflect on the real story.
Graduating from the Slade School of Fine Art 2016, Donald specialises predominantly in painting and drawing. Whilst at the Slade he exhibited in Helsinki, Finland where he was an exchange student at the Kuvataideakatemia. Upon graduating, he exhibited in Bloomberg New Contemporaries 2016 ; touring to the Liverpool Biennale at the Bluecoat and at the ICA, London. This year he had his first solo show at the newly established Newcastle art space Slugtown ,as well as a recent drawing commission for Gucci's Marche des Merveilles watch line.
Hannah Tilson will graduate with a Bachelors in Painting from the Slade School of Fine Art in 2018. She exhibited works in New York, 2016 and has a forthcoming solo show at The Peckham Pelican, December 2017. Tilson has recently completed a summer residency in Chelsea, London.
Centre for Recent Drawing
London’s museum space for drawing - a member of the Museum Association of the UK and a UK Registered Charity. Founded as an artist project in 2004, C4RD has since provided a public exhibition series, residencies, talks, publications and encouraged production towards independent and non-commercial aims; C4RD is in the unique position of being able to provide a whole building dedicated to drawing - showing continuous exhibitions of a broad variety of drawing practice - and also be able to house residencies specifically for those for whom drawing is a core part of their practice.
Alice Bygraves is a freelance curator who has over eight years’ experience working in museums and galleries. She spent two years working at the British School at Rome with artists and took part in archaeological excavations. She is Director of Geddes Gallery, a nomadic space which was first housed for over a year in KC Continental deli on Caledonian Road.
For more information and images please contact Alice Bygraves: firstname.lastname@example.org