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Oana Beatrice

the Power of drawing: in search for immaterial possibility

Project details

Spatial Design
No practice
Re-imagining Tomorrow through Arts and Sciences, RASL, Honours Programme

Regardless of the creative field, sketching remains an integral part of the design process. This drawing phase is crucial when
shaping concepts into visual form, as it facilitates the translation of immaterial thoughts, into material representation. These thoughts,
captured on a two-dimensional surface, are a prerequisite for action: as blueprints, they guide the execution.

But when one draws for the sake of drawing, without aiming to advance design processes, does one accomplish anything else but a series of visual self-expression? Is it possible we misunderstood the significance of drawing, and diminished it into simply just an artform?

My project celebrates drawing as a practice, in itself worthy of attention — as it teaches one, in their own pace, how to ‘draw‘ endless possibility into the world.  The embodied practice of drawing specifically sharpens our instincts, to engage in life with holistic consideration — the same one must deploy in the act of drawing.

From cave paintings to contemporary design, the skill of drawing has been used to facilitate visual communication, and eventually mastered into an art.

Every one of us has an inclination for drawing — at the most basic level, as children, we begin to express ourselves and to learn about the world by marking. If children continue drawing, they no longer simply develop their cognitive abilities, but they are labeled ”young artists”.

But why do we make this correlation between the act of drawing and the becoming of an artist? Can drawing be distinguished from art, and recognized as a distinct practice, with it own values and own significance?

To approach this enigma, I started drawing, and reflecting upon both the process of making and on the resulting illustration. This autoetnographic research helped me elucidate drawing and its inherent power: what it is, what it means, and what it could be.

To crystalize my research into the stand-alone project, I treated drawing as a subject of inquiry, rather than a medium.

To highlight the progressive process of drawing, I blew up a drawing into its prior stages: from the first blank page, until the last mark. By doing so, I created a spatial installation composed of nine drawings, each being a step in the evolution of the next drawings.

‚ÄčAs my research argues that drawing’s value stems from the practice, rather than from the finished result, the drawings showcased are works-in-progress: not yet perfected into art.

Each drawing gradually increases complexity, explicitly denoting the succesive change of thinking perception that is required to both produce and to appreciate the drawing.

Going from drawing out a technical representation of reality (in black pencil), all the way to drawing out an imaginary representation of endless possibility (in white chalk), the story unfolding through the drawing series is an invitation to deeper thought, to rational sensibility and to restless imagination.

Thus, I developed the spatial installation titled ”Drawing Deeper”, as an intervention in time, showcasing the process, the practice, and the power of drawing.

Read my research here:

The power of Drawing
download as pdf

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