Focus Gallery One: Drawing Narrative By Christopher Troutman
September 12- October 24, 2015
Reception: September 12, 2015 6-9pm
In my current body of work, drawing is my primary means of expression. The immediacy of drawing allows a close connection between mark and thought, as working from imagination is central to my process. Through an interaction with drawing materials, particularly charcoal, and sometimes ink, using mark making, layering, erasing and smudging, I build content in my work, as opposed to medium being selected offhand at the service of an idea. As a result, progressive stages of a drawing determine its content: compositionally, I begin with lines and shapes, yet occasionally with a specific subject in mind from previously completed sketches, which suggest figures and environments. This subject matter interacts to imply narrative and the passage of time, which is enhanced by dividing drawings into multiple sections. Recently, I have used multi-sectioned drawings to examine similarities and differences between my memories of the U.S.’s Midwest and of southern Japan, the two places I reside each year, by juxtaposing visual and spatial features unique to both locations.
My subjects are human figures in contemporary urban settings, which I exaggerate by depicting them from unfamiliar points of view, revealing the interest and subsequent value of everyday visual experience as a topic of exploration in drawing. I work from imagination, shifting points of view presented in drawings from the memories that initiate them. I strive to avoid external references until my ability to visualize a subject fails, after which I use observational sketches and photographs to complete final details. My interest in depicting the passage of time, dynamic space defined by the human figure and linear perspective, and drawing from imagination comes from the influence of comic book art, work by Lienil Yu is an example, as well as art examining the figure in urban and domestic settings within active compositions, such as work by Edgar Degas, Edward Hopper, and Robert Birmelin.
Lastly, my drawings are large-scale, which I hang unmediated by a frame, bringing them into the audience’s immediate space and making the process each drawing has undergone directly visible to viewers. The scale of the drawings, the figures within them, as well as composition and point of view, place the audience in unexpected, and sometimes overwhelming, spaces, enabling the resonant experiences from which the drawings are inspired achieve a similar resonance with viewers. -- Christopher Troutman