Drawing the human figure from life is one of the greatest
challenges any artist can face. Throughout history, artists
working in a variety of genres have found the practice of life
drawing an invaluable and a necessary artistic discipline.
Although there is a common thread in all human form, each model is
unique and offers infinite possibilities for personal
expression. This exhibition looks at engaging life
drawings and portraits that are masterfully done by contemporary
artists and which are inspired by the classical and realist
Displayed throughout the exhibit are preliminary sketches for
paintings, portrait drawings, and academic studies which offer
examples of linear, tonal, and other techniques; additionally,
these works shed insight into the journey each artist undertakes to
capture life as they see it.
In certain works on display, the viewer will witness linear
drawings which conceive their form with a combination of straight
and/or curved lines of varying lengths and widths. Through
the careful consideration of gesture, rhythm, contour, and
overlapping forms, a profound sense of volume and spatial depth are
achieved without a strong emphasis on modeling and shading.
Linear drawings serve as an excellent means towards capturing a
dynamic pose that would be impossible for the model to maintain
over a long duration of time; in other instances, a linear approach
quickly captures and resolves issues of form that the artist may
encounter later in a painting.
In contrast, other drawings in this exhibition articulate the
human form by exploring the effects and behavior of light on the
model’s unique topography, anatomy, and structure. The
results of this approach are an emphasis on the body's mass through
the careful research of shapes of relative value and tone.
The viewer will find generous examples of tonal drawings where the
form is developed at a slow and careful pace working one form at a
time to a high degree of finish. Other artist's works
incorporate tone more freely over the entire page using the
environment and atmosphere as integral components of the overall
Regardless of preferred practice, all the drawings displayed
demonstrate the impressive degree of accuracy that each of these
artists has achieved through an intense personal resolve to
interpret nature, and in particular, the human form.
Unassisted by the aid of photography, each of their pieces typify a
synthesis of time-tested principles and traditions used by past
masters dating back to classical antiquity. These drawings
serve as a refreshing reminder that traditions of the past still
hold strong and are becoming ever more important in an age of fast
paced technological advancement.
The artists represented here are not only masters of their craft
but generous educators who teach at distinguished art institutions,
academies, and ateliers throughout the entire country. Their
teachings and philosophies can also be found in various major
publications. To have the works of these skilled experts exhibited
together is a unique opportunity to learn about the language of
drawing and its evolving nature.
But most importantly, it is opportunity to witness life-like awe
inspiring pieces created by artists at the forefront of figurative
Daniel Da Silva