Tag Archives: Imagination

Thinking on the Pages of Sketchbooks

Elisa Alaluusua originates from Finnish Lapland and has been exhibiting internationally since the beginning of 1990s. Her first degree was in drawing (1991), since then she has completed two MAs, one in UK (Environmental Art, 1995) and one in Finland (Art Education, 1999), and practice-based PhD at the University of the Arts London (2016) on the topic of Sketchbooks. In 2015 she won the second prize in the prestigious Jerwood Drawing Prize with her video/drawing ‘Unconditional Line’.

This article is based on her PhD research ‘Sketchbooks – A Comparative Analysis of the Use of Sketchbooks by Contemporary Artists’ and makes an attempt to get a better understanding of how thinking happens on sketchbook pages and what visual form it might take.

Flood Story – Drawing the Anthropocene

“My approach to drawing is twofold. Firstly to use it as a tool to get out and examine the stuff of the world, to gather information and record experience. Secondly, as a means to construct narratives which communicate what I think and feel. These latter drawings often play out themes of environmental and social change, most recently speculation on the effect of global warming and rising sea levels.”

Gerry Davies is Senior Lecturer at Lancaster University and an artist who writes on drawing. He is ‘less interested in what drawing is, more interested in what it can do’. His work seeks to get a better understanding of how and where drawing today is engaging with subjects beyond the arts, in for example, science, medicine, and anthropology.

Sound Works

Naomi Kashiwagi is an award-winning artist who produces sound works, installations, performances and works on paper, that draw upon her cultural heritage, an intrinsic fusion of two cultures, British and Japanese. Drawing is central to Kashiwagi’s practice and she makes drawings using a range of media including diamonds, typewriters, gramophones and pianos, as well as graphite and pen.

Fictional Fragments

Anouk Mercier’s works present fictional, collaged landscapes and scenes, composed of fragments of existing 18th Century landscape etchings seamlessly assembled and interwoven with flowing waterfalls. Although clearly influenced by Romanticism, the melancholic worlds created deliberately escape definition: pastel coloured skies and surreal horizons hint at sci-fi, futuristic propositions, whilst purposefully disrupting obvious references to the Past and complacent idylls. These subtle contradictions result in a tension further symbolized by derelict architectural elements, simultaneously alluding to heroic monuments whilst embodying their decay.

from ‘Element’

Cecil Balmond OBE, is widely considered to be one of the most significant creators of his generation.

An internationally renowned artist, architect and engineer, Cecil Balmond transcends the conventional boundaries of discipline working in the crossover between art and science. In this dynamic area, he has re-invented the very concept of space, transforming the meaning of geometry, form and structure.

Balmond’s design approach engages inner organisational systems – a process based on rigorous research. He has spent over 40 years investigating the relationship between form and the very roots of order at the core of life

A world over-amplified and speeding up

“A world over-amplified and speeding up.

The telescoping of industrialised environment, consumer spectacle, celebration, delirium, waste and war through time.”

Tod Hanson’s current work can also be seen as an outcome of past experience producing large scale graphic works with Greenpeace UK and painting nightclub interiors. This with an interest in architecture, the decorative arts, diagrams and mapping.

If I Were an Astronomer. If I Were a Botanist.

From 2013-2015, Kozloff challenged herself to bring the decorative and cartographic together. Spurred by recent travel along the silk route, she returned for the first time to the Islamic star patterns that structured her early art. A group of works titled “If I Were a Botanist” and “If I Were an Astronomer” revisit two artist books Kozloff made in 1977, in which she manipulated the black-and-white diagrams in Islamic geometry books, morphing and tessellating the patterns to create kaleidoscopic compositions saturated with color. Using these earlier pages as templates, Kozloff employed digital processes to reimagine the arrangement and expand the scale of the patterns. She then infused these intricate paintings with collage elements comprised of outtakes and trial proofs from previous projects, overpainting every tiny bit of attached paper with delicate brushstrokes. Merging the biographical and the political, each panel becomes a microcosm of the artist’s career. In “If I Were a Botanist: the Journey,” patterns radiate and converge in constellations of interlocking shapes unfurling across thirty feet of canvas. Their joyful aura disguises the embedded political content, visible on closer inspection.

An Exploration between Vision and Sound

“My work is an exploration between vision and sound and the power of this connection to generate compelling visual environments. The inquiry of this integration has also satisfied a strong interest in the ideas and methodology of science as a basis for the conceptual underpinning of the work. As such, the method of creating my work is scientifically inspired with a well thought out and tested process oriented to have optimal pragmatic results both for the quality of the work itself and the benefits of the process for me as the maker. I pursue a union between the perceptual and conceptual with a visual art that can be both perceptually powerful enough to hold the eye in our visually demanding world, yet simultaneously meditative, reflective, and firmly rooted in a solid conceptual foundation.”

Daniel Hill is an abstract painter and sound artist whose work has been included in numerous exhibitions exploring the relationship between painting, sound, and science.
He is currently an Adjunct Associate Professor of Art at Pace University in Manhattan.

A Phenomenological and Process Approach to Pattern

“Merely conceiving of and talking about reality and experience at all presuppose notions of pattern, meaning and consciousness. This position recognises the immanence of an existing objective reality, which nevertheless is in any way accessible and meaningful to us only though our subjective apprehension of it. Reciprocally it also recognises that consciousness is always consciousness of the real world – a response to the meanings of the world, to the world’s own consciousness as it were. The pattern of being is deeply relational, originating in between ‘subject’ and ‘object’, prior to their separation.”

Monia Brizzi is a London based Chartered Psychologist, Registered Psychotherapist and Associate Fellow of the British Psychological Society.

Time and Memory

“Time and memory play an important role in my work. I aspire to translate these feelings, perceptions, and sensations into something palpable, fluid , intimating the process by which formlessness becomes form. I work in varied formats, drawings, paintings, books, digital imagery, photography and sculpture, all based in an abstract language.”

Robyn Ellenbogen is a visual artist and Zen Buddhist practitioner. Her work is widely exhibited throughout the New York Metropolitan area and is included in private and public collections.