|"Lawrence", 2015, typewriter drawing on Rives BFK|
In this series of portraits the subject's identity is obscured either by natural visual distortion or by the purposeful withholding of certain features, a result of my fascination with the way in which facial features can mutate into erratic and confusing landscapes. As my heavy handed drawing techniques in traditional media and linework urge cartoonish renderings, the sense of veracity that comes with portraiture was elusive.
Using my Sears Citation II manual typewriter as a drawing tool and a photograph of the subject as a framework, I challenged my instinct to rely on caricature but also found myself resistant to the ideals of traditional portraiture. Rather than seeking and depicting a blank truth, where facial features and body parts appear as expected, I was compelled to complete an exercise in neglecting the firmly cemented visual images in my head. Navigating through this imagery using this cumbersome yet delicate drawing tool within the delineated contours of the photographs allowed me to scatter my focus, working in one compartment at a time and allowing the images to form like sediment collecting, a slow build of overlapping marks and feeds through the typewriter until each was complete. Focusing solely on the difference in values and angles and not the expectations of visual truth, I was led back to the fundamental task of drawing what’s there.
Unrevealed will be on view at Rush Mor Records in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, June 5 - June 30, 2015. Opening reception Friday, June 5, 5pm - 10pm--part of Bayview Gallery Night and Rollout, a family-friendly bike tour/interactive gallery night extravaganza sponsored by Rush Mor, Church of 2 Wheels and South Shore Cyclery.
Here's a snippet of the limited edition poster I made commemorating Rollout 2015! There will only be 25 after the participating galleries/businesses get theirs, so make sure you snag one. See you there!