Opening June 12 at Pirate Contemporary Art in Lakewood, Colorado, Study Room features 19 works from the Wraps series. The show title comes from many (too many) hours spent behind the scenes in museum collections looking at prints and silverpoint drawings close-up and personal – the ideal way to look at small works, in my opinion. For many of the drawings in this sub-set of the series, I start with a paper model, cut, folded, shaped and twisted into a new object which I draw in silverpoint. The objects themselves are inspired in many cases by ideas from mathematics and quantum mechanics. The drawings of Palladio and Jamnitzer have also inspired me lately, and some of their ideas creep in to these works as well. I don’t claim expertise about these artists or about the scientific theories, but the sense of wonder they generate inspires me to try things which sometimes result in interesting drawings.
These drawings were mostly done between 2018 and 2020, many while I was working on the book, Silverpoint and Metalpoint Drawing with Susan Schwalb, and just as many after the book was published, when I could dig in to studio work again in earnest. Silverpoint is a medium which elicits subtlety in light and line effects, and I am always looking to make work which both shows the capabilities of the medium, and challenges me to find new levels of competency with it (sometimes with disastrous results!). In general, it takes me roughly a week to decide on a subject, plan the drawing, and execute the finished work. The paleness and precision of silverpoint allows me to work slowly, spending time examining the subject then bringing it to life gradually, in subtle, exact tones.
Arrhythmia, 2020, silverpoint on prepared paper, 10 3/4 x 13 1/4 inches
Radiolarian I, 2019, silverpoint on casein-prepared paper, 14 1/2 x 10 3/4 inches.
Cyclone, 2019, copperpoint on casein-prepared paper, 11 x 11 inches (sheet size)
Fibonacci Spiral, 2019, silverpoint on casein-prepared paper, 11 x 13 3/4 inches (sheet size)
Elliptical Spiral, 2019, silverpoint on casein-prepared paper, 10 3/4 x 15 1/4 inches
Caldera, 2019, silverpoint on casein-prepared paper, 11 x 15 inches (sheet size)
Palladio, 2018, silverpoint on prepared paper, 15 x 11 inches (sheet size)
Pucker, 2016, silverpoint on casein-prepared paper, 11 1/2 x 14 1/2 inches (sheet size)
Double Slit (Version 1), 2018, silverpoint on prepared paper, 13 x 10.75 inches
Love Knot, 2019, silverpoint on prepared paper, 10 3/4 x 13 inches
© 2020 Tom Mazzullo