The Museum of Contemporary Art
(MCA) celebrates the reinvigoration of drawing in Australia with a new exhibition featuring 29 contemporary artists from across the nation.
Drawing is currently enjoying a renaissance in contemporary art circles, having
been embraced by a mostly younger generation of Australian artists.
I Walk the Line: New Australian Drawing extends beyond the ‘traditional’ definition of drawing, to include works addressing both the practice and nature of the drawing medium. The exhibition explores a range of different approaches to contemporary drawing, encompassing both two- and three-dimensional works, cell animation, performance and video.
Artworks include Laith McGregor’s intricate and luminescent line drawings on
paper made entirely with fine blue biro pen and Dorota Mytych’s charcoal drawing of hundreds of small humans which at a distance create the image of a jester’s face.
Lionel Bawden explores the three dimensional approach to drawing with his
sculpture the amorphous ones (the insatiable, unquantifiable longing) made from hundreds of white pencils adhered together and then carved and sanded into a
beautifully organic form. Bawden, who presents his sculpture on a plinth made
from thousands of sheets of paper, He describes the work as ‘pencil on paper’.
Also on view are performative works featuring the production of marks,
animation pieces and collaborative artworks, including a work by artist twins
Gabriella and Silvana Mangano who have filmed a performance in which their
hands draw over, around and across one another’s body.
A significant new commission by Gosia Wlodarczak represents the immediacy
of drawing, with the artist documenting the drama that may unfold during a six
hour dinner party to be held at the MCA. The artist will make a continual drawn observation directly on the tablecloth of everything she sees while guests eat, talk
and interact around the table. For the duration of the exhibition, MCA will display the table—with the drawings all over its cloth—as a drawn record of the event.
The froth of cappuccinos and lattes will form the ‘canvas’ for Brisbane-based artist Sebastian Moody when he presents his Coffee Intervention project as part of the exhibition. Within this project, all coffees purchased from Campo’s coffee shop -
situated at the MCA’s George Street entrance and owned by rugby union legend David Campese - will have their froth ‘drawn’ onto by baristas for the duration of the exhibition.
Moody conceived the project as a way of acknowledging the labour, care and expertise that people put into overlooked, everyday jobs like making coffee. Baristas, including on occasion David Campese himself, will initial and number every coffee they make during the day. In this way the artist is exploring the idea that drawing can be defined as this simple act of making marks in coffee foam.