Tania Kovat’s book gives a comprehensive overview of drawing in relation to contemporary art. She investigates the status of drawing with regard to Painting, Space, Sculpture and drawing, and then considers it under five different headings- Measurement, Nature, City, Dreams and Body. There are wealth of examples of drawing in all it forms from Durer and Leonardo da Vinci to Paul Noble and Ellen Gallagher.
‘For me drawing is a form of thinking’ Anthony Gormley (p61)
‘Drawings have a featherlike quality’ Louise Borgeois (p63)
‘Drawing is the truest test of art’ J-A D Ingres (p82)
‘What drawings have in common is greater than their differences’ Michael Craig- Martin (p81)
‘My drawings are a diary of my work’ Rachel Whiteread (p193)
‘Drawing is a verb’ Richard Serra (p281)
‘With drawing you are in the present’ Kiki Smith (p250)
‘Drawing for me is about fluidity’ William Kentridge (p35)
These are just some of the quotes from the book, not necessarily in full, which illustrate in some measure the various way artists might think about drawing and what it might mean for them.
Some of the materials used to make drawing that are featured in the book-
Some of the grounds/surface used to make drawing on-
Lined writing paper
Metric graph paper
Matt acetate paper
All sorts of paper
Wood (various sorts)
This book illustrates the diverse nature of drawing. To try and pin it down to one definition would be futile, but you do get a sense that across time it has been and is still a crucial part of many artists practice, although the way they describe what it means for them may have changed slightly. I have found this is a book that I keep going back to. A reminder that drawing can be many things.
Kovats, Tania (Ed) The Drawing Book- a survey of drawing: The primary means of expression. London; Black Dog Publishing.