Untitled no. 67, 2011crayon, oil stick, inks, graphite and gesso on paper30 x 22 1/4"
My art review of a show in November 2011
Barry Whistler Gallery’s presentation of artist Andrea Rosenberg is not your typical abstract art show, but nothing is ordinary about Rosenberg’s approach to flowers and the abstract. Informal drawings with painterly qualities, these art works on paper are full of life and action. Her title “Andrea Rosenberg Drawings” inspires an interesting debate about the term “drawing”.
I sometimes wonder what makes a painting a painting and a drawing a drawing, especially when a term like drawing has had an expansive definition as of late. Some might try to label this work mixed media, but I think the trend is to move away from this term because mixed media could be describing two or three dimensional work. Rosenberg is clearly making drawings rather than some hybrid form because she is following some key ideas that fundamentally pursue the drawing traditions. Drawings have a long history of acting as the creative foundation to other works.
These art works feel as if they are “becoming”. They feel like sketches or drafts to a possible painting, but then this is why these works are drawings. The feeling of “becoming” is extremely important, because this gives the drawing life and an unfinished look. Material is another key element to drawing. Rosenberg uses gesso and ink washes along with traditional drawing materials of crayon, oil stick, inks, and graphite. Though these works have the feeling of watercolor elements coming in to play, the material reveals Rosenberg’s mark making strategy, and eliminates the possibility that these are watercolors. Finally, drawing has a sense of impermanence. That is why you will see so many drawings on the delicate material of paper. I love works on paper. When it comes to working with wet media, the paper will warp into hills and valleys.
Rosenberg’s drawings seem to be breathing and living in the frame. I love the scale of some of these drawings as well. The large pieces seem like delicate monuments. Rosenbeg tests the limits of paper through her wet media and mark making. I can image a few works have torn on her during the process. Although I see a lot of floral elements in this body of work, she leaves us guessing with titles like Untitled no. 67 or Untitled no. 63. You can only guess in what sequence she made the work. I would think that Cy Twombly is a huge influence on her, because these drawings talk the same language and move with similar shapes and gestures. Barry Whistler Gallery will be showing Andrea Rosenberg’s drawings through November 26th.
For more pictures go to ModernDallas.net