On Drawing: Drawing has always been at the very heart of my work. To me it all comes from drawing and returns to it. It is the cause and effect of so much that I do that I can hardly think of a way of working that doesn’t include some form of drawing. I remember years ago when there where articles about the death of the pencil, how the paperless society would eradicate the need for any stylus. One manufacturer noted that it has forever been the tool of thought and that as long as we were a thinking people, he could not see any future without the pencil.
“But you still haven’t defined what drawing is? So how can you have a drawing program?”
I will make some attempt here.
Drawing by its very nature is a highly individualistic art form. This is the source of its beauty as well as the crux of the problem. In this sense, an academy more so than an art college or art university is drawing’s natural abode. It is only logical that this academy, being American, has taken that individualistic tendency to its extreme in modernists and traditionalists alike. Academic drawing is an odyssey but what starts as an odyssey eventually brings one to some destination. Our “program” as it stands bears no resemblance to an odyssey but to a meandering. Thus, it has no destination and can reach none.
Drawing is a non-stop search, a relentless homily on the human autonomy, a “song of myself” as it were, defying the automatic fashions of both traditional as well as modernist. But it can never become so autistic that it loses its universal appeal of longing, resilience, and surrender to what it seeks. It is the art of exacting in the fullest sense the best and the worst with both eyes opened and yet with wonderment to it all. In short, it is a visual poem by, for and to the vigilant of the world. I have been drawing for as long as I can remember.