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“Pulp” Preview: Clara Lieu September 1, 2009

Posted by claralieu in drawing.
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A preview of a work that will be in “Pulp: Works on Paper by the Studio Art Faculty“:  “Range XIV”, an ink drawing  of mine from the “Waiting Series”.  Read my artist statement below the image.

Clara Lieu

These ink drawings are from the Waiting Series, a body of works which explored social isolation in the context of lines of figures waiting in an undefined space. I was interested in the contradiction of the act of waiting:  waiting figures stand in very close physical proximity to each other, but at the same time are locked within themselves, unaware and unresponsive to the other figures surrounding them. Despite their isolation from each other, a line of waiting figures creates a situation where the gesture of one figure directly leads to the next, creating a fluidity and visual relationship between all of the figures.

I began this project with the construction of about 100 small scale figure sculptures to serve as reference models for ink drawings, prints, and paintings.  Each figure was sculpted to represent a unique gesture associated with waiting. The figures were purposefully sculpted with very little detail, so that their ambiguity could stimulate more visual possibilities when transitioning to other media. The casting process provided the opportunity to replicate each individual figure in large quantities, allowing for repetition of the same figure throughout various compositions. I developed a strong familiarity with these recurring figures, recognizing them in different contexts with each new composition.

To create compositions, the figure sculptures were carefully arranged into lines of waiting figures. This process provided infinite possibilities in terms of composition and point of view of the scene.   The figure sculptures were dramatically lit to create long shadows which allowed me to define a landscape without actually directly representing one. These blank, infinite landscapes allow the viewer to place the waiting figures at any place or point in time. After the lighting was set up, the figures were photographed in order to create resource material for the final ink drawings, prints, and paintings.Clara Lieu


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