press release

Throughout the twentieth century, and in particular since the 1960s, artists have mined language for the subject and matter of their art, incorporating the mode, format and meaning of text into their work. For their first collaborative project, Drawing Room, London and Drawing Center, New York, present parallel exhibitions that explore the relationship between linguistic communication and drawing in recent art. The selected artists take language and the written word as the subject of the work itself. They re-examine the codes, symbols, and structures of language, while at the same time harnessing the personal and cultural context in which the work is produced. Rather than denying the subjective, expressive form of language, as many artists sought to do in the 1960s, or foregrounding language's key role in defining identity, as others did in the 1980s and '90s, the artists in Marking Language and Drawing Time and Reading Time articulate paths between the formal properties and coded meanings of words and text. In short, these exhibitions investigate drawing and writing as distinct yet interrelated modes of expression.

Marking Language could be read as a series of propositions, or positions, that consider the relationship between drawing and written communication in contemporary practice. It takes work being made today, by seven artists, of roughly the same generation but originating from very different parts of the world, to explore this rich territory.

Drawing Time, Reading Time will be at The Drawing Center, New York, 15 November 2013 to 13 January 2014 and a fully illustrated catalogue of both exhibitions will include essays by Claire Gilman, Curator, Drawing Center, New York; Melissa Gronlund, an editor of Afterall and a writer on contemporary art based in London and Kate Macfarlane, Co-Director, Drawing Room.

Marking Language
Exhibition exploring the relationship between linguistic communication and drawing in recent art

Pavel Büchler, Johanna Calle, Annabel Daou, Matias Faldbakken, Karl Holmqvist, Bernardo Ortiz, Shahzia Sikander.