especially as i'd just participated in a workshop that centered on the premise of drawing from memory
and not just memory but specific memory
of a piece viewed in the collection of the Art Gallery of South Australia
[ie the first instruction being "draw a copy/your memory of a work by another artist"]
it was an intriguing and rigorous physical and intellectual exercise
and as the instructor [Christopher Orchard] very clearly pointed out
none of the pieces drawn by participants were "art"
and in fact, pieces made in workshops [of any kind]
should not be considered as part of a person's oevre
and certainly not exhibited as such
[regrettably something too often seen in the textile world]*
but continuing in the spirit of Ronnie's discussion
i thought it might be interesting to put some of my drawings up here
with a link or two to the original works
the visual information was gathered when i wandered into an exhibition at the AGSA titled "Terrain" and found this object by the late Rosalie Gascoigne, an artist whose work i have long admired [i even flew to Melbourne for a day a couple of years ago just to see a retrospective of her work]
i won't paste her image here [copyright issues] but you can follow the links
so my first image went like this
it then wandered on to
and then sanguine was introduced as a variant
but still using elements of the original image
followed by the instruction to call a figure to mind [again from the collection]
and bring it into the composition
the figure is rather less recognisable than the more graphic work, but was derived from Mortimer Menpes "alone in a shoe shop" and you can see that by this time [in the afternoon, some three hours after viewing the original painting] my memory of the figure is more than a little hazy [and drawing figures ain't my strength in any case]
one of the points our instructor made along the way is that it would be pretty difficult to draw/paint something free of anything you had previously seen. our imaginations are inevitably influenced by experience and memory [subject food for discussion with a good glass of red]
i had a fabulous few days working at drawing and was quite satisfied with the marks i made. but again i stress they are not art. they are perhaps wobbly stepping stones in a stream on my path to somewhere else. breadcrumbs in the forest.
i told a student in a class a couple of years ago in response to her announcing she wouldn't be stitching together the pieces during class as her intent was to frame all her samples and present them as her upcoming solo show, that no self-respecting artist would exhibit workshop samples unless they wished to lose all credibility. i won't be exhibiting these either or using them as the foundation for deriving "new" work.
but you may well spot some distilled essences of them somewhere in the future...a good friend has already been pointed out to me by that the drawings i made under Orchard's direction in class could be seen as being influenced by the weavings of Sandra Brownlee with whom i spent time in Halifax recently [even though they were drawn from Rosalie Gascoigne] . they might well be. i'd have to be a stone NOT to be influenced at all by her work.
it might also have been influenced by Greg John's sculpture 'Fugue' on the banks of the River Torrens. [i had my lunch on the grass nearby]
where am i going with this? acknowledge your sources, ask people for permission [especially if you want to publish their work] and play nice. it's better karma and makes for a nicer whirled.
and now it's time for a cup of tea.
ps and before you ask, yes, i made that big word up.
* and before someone takes up the issue of exhibitions and textiles and calls my bluff on The Talisman Dress, let me state that exhibitions openly described as being the outcome of a workshop process are an entirely different matter...especially where the stated intent of the class is to collectively exhibit the work