Glasgow School of Art, Glasgow, Wed 15 Jan-Sat 22 Feb

For so long, drawing has been the poor relation of the art world. People think they know what drawing is and what it isn't. But in 1994, the fine art department at the University of Gloucestershire hosted and organised the first Cheltenham Open Drawing Competition. Two years later, it became an annual event and by 2000, the Jerwood Foundation was sponsoring it, an investment that illustrated its importance.

Rainy Afternoon 2 by Roy Brown

Marco Livingstone, artist Cornelia Parker and writer

‘Because it happens every year, the show proposes a question which is: “What is drawing?” says Anita Taylor, deputy head of the school (art, media and design) at the University of Gloucestershire. ‘Why we draw follows that, in terms of making decisions about what a good drawing is. We chose a panel who would interpret it broadly, and the outcome is that drawing was extended into the idea of objects and other more transitory forms.’

And there can be none more transitory than the exhibit this year produced on a child’s Etch-A-Sketch toy. Roy Brown’s Rainy Afternoon 2 refers to frustrated attempts as a child at drawing representational images using only horizontal and vertical actions. In adulthood, Brown’s successful image of two people using the toy is not only innovative, but transports the viewer back to childhood.

Ian Davenport, known for his poured paintings also features in the selection. In Cartoon Colours 1, he pours thin lines of paint vertically down paper. You’ll also find traditional pencil lines on paper among the winning selection of 88 drawings by 75 artists, whittled down from 2000 entries by a panel that included art historian

Marina Warner. The winning entries in this, the UK’s only annual open exhibition for drawing, are touring to Glasgow School of Art whose graduates are represented by Kevin Murphy and Jessica Wolfson among others.

This year’s winner, Adam Dant who received a cheque for £3,000, submitted his humorous An Anecdotal Plan of Tate Britain 2001, which parallels the ‘constructed nature of official historical documents’.

Ansel Krut came second with Heartless Roach, an ink and acrylic drawing of two figures which Krut describes as ‘a handful of rubber bands which have fallen haphazardly to form the outline of the drawing’. And student prize winner, Susan Collis, submitted an etched and stained table, drawing to the viewer’s attention to the idea of hidden labour.

‘The show promotes drawing but it also challenges where the boundaries are,’ says Taylor. ‘People have a fixed view of what drawing is. This exhibition tries to have some kind of definition through professional eyes.’ (Helen Monaghan)



The Queen's Gallery, Edinburgh, until Sun 30 Mar 0...

Detail of Two Grotesque Profiles Confronted c.1485-90

Da Vinci is best known for two iconic paintings that have insciibed themselves into westein consoousness to the point of cliche: The Mona Lisa and The Last Supper. A wry smile and a moment of dramatic tensiOn. anticipating the event that would forever change the curse of religion. Both are f.xed in Our minds. unchanging. But Leonardo da Vmci: The Divine and the Grotesgue. inaugural exhibition of the new Queen's Gallery. shows a moie fluid side to Da Vincrs work. It focuses On 73 sketches and drawmgs made over the course of his life. looking in particular at his eaily obsession with divine proportion, his treatment of men and women. costume sketches and most fascinatingly, his exploration of the grotesoue.

Like today. in Leonardo's times. earthly and human propoition was revered. Renaissance thinking took such perfection as a ieflection of (Il\.lIl0 piesence. And so it goes.

conversely. that misshapen features. wonky eyes. huge crooked chins and flapping lips reflect the profane. the sketches in this section are aStOunding in their modernity. With the freedom of pen and paper. it's as if Leonardo has been allowed to let his imagination run iiot. ielishing each deformity They aie drawn. nonetheless. with the same authentative and delicate skill afforded to his anatomical sketches or ‘ideal types'.

A sense of intimacy is helped by the new galleiy space. specifically designed to show piints and diawings. To see the individual ink and chalk maiks or to see a seiap of paper with a few ideas sketched out or at different angles. doodles even is to get a ieal sense of Leonardo da Vinci as a man and artist. As a ieal person who worked away wrth gieat diligence and sometimes diew for his own amusement. Go you won't be disappointed. (Ruth lledges‘.


News from the world of art

SWITCHSPACE HAS NEVER taken a conventional approach to exhibiting the work of emerging artists. The micro- gallery’s last shows transformed a Glasgow living room, but its latest project took over a semi-derelict building with wind whistling through the windows. It took place over the weekend of 6 December 2002 at new arts and music space, the Chateau, on Bridge Street in Glasgow. The unconventional surroundings served the show well, with work from the likes of Hayley Tompkins, Lottie Gertz and Neil Bickerton and Lorna Macintyre seeming to grow out of the dilapidated environment. Kim Coleman and Susea Green’s A Performance also stood out, turning a cramped side room into a miniature bonfire night, jerry-rigged from bits of foil and a lonely sparkler. For future unconventional projects, see (JM)



EDINBURGH'S FOREST ARTS IS looking for submissions for its annual A5 Exhibition. which will iun ll()"l 7 February Lintil 6 March 2003. \‘i’ei'ks can be submitted in 2D. 30 and tli or ‘.'..illO'.li momng parts. Deadline fer entiies is 2 February 2003. Fer further infor'nation. contact Forest Arts. 9 West Poit. Edinburgh EH3 6R0. call ()t31 221 0237 Or log Onto ‘.'.".'.".'.'.theforest.orguk GLASGOW MUSEUMS HAS recently purchased a three- light stained-glass window, The Coronation of the Blessed Virgin (1923) by Irish artist Harry Clarke (1889-1931). The work will be displayed in the entrance foyer of the new Open Museum towards the end of 2003. Staying with the museums, four pieces of furniture designed by Charles Rennie Mackintosh have been brought back to Glasgow, including a writing cabinet. Glasgow City Council, with partners the National Trust for Scotland, the Heritage Lottery Fund and National Art Collection Fund acquired the pieces for a total of £1.44m. The works are on display at the Art Gallery & Museum, Kelvingrove until March 2003.

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