No history, or discussion, about drawing, would be
complete, without some mention of Van Gogh.
As a way to start this text, this essay, his
work is perfect. The line, the hand, the evidence
of the man. The humanity, expression, mark -
making. The emotion, tenderness, subtlety, shown
in his work.
Some of this experience comes from the Royal
Academy show in London in 2010, I saw, and
felt his work, properly, experienced, the
resonance, and connection, that can come, from
the artists hand.
The immediacy, vibrancy, and contact.
And the experience. He is popular, his work is
popular - why? Because of the line, the colour?
He is the archetypal artist - the myth of
the artist - the tortured soul, the tragic
artist, the story that surrounds the work, and
how it is experienced, understood. Or - experienced,
and misunderstood. Story, and understanding. The
My experience, is that it was felt, he, can be
The renaissance artists, in particular, the
collection at the National Gallery in London -
I worked there as a student - has the same effect
drawings, drawn marks, unchanged, in process,
beyond time, fashion, comprehension. Still, in those
works, the artist is present, evident. The process
of drawing is unchanged. Standing in front of that
work. The line, the emotional impact, the story of the
work, the artist, exists - in a profound, felt way,
the history, and years between, vanish.
There is a freshness. The practice of drawing, is
relatively unchanged, from the renaissance artists
to now. The impact - the paintings are considered,
for me, I don't engage, or - the engagement, the
contact, is different (learning, learned, rather
In Berger on Drawing , John Berger talks about
work that reveals too much. Perhaps, like Van
Gogh, this is where the story - 'story', of the
artist kicks in. What Berger says, is that the
audience have to not understand, in order to
engage, be able to make contact with the
work - and perhaps, each other. The surround.
Life Drawing -
Berger also points out, that drawing from a nude
model, is called 'life drawing' - drawing life,
drawing from life. A person - drawing the existence,
of a body, soul, feeling, nuance. The person,
as living, lived.
Berger is talking about Picasso here, his series
of drawings. I began to think of Egon Shiele,
Hockney, Beardsley, and Salt Aire in Yorkshire,
where Hockney's works can be seen in the
Mill exhibition spaces 
The way that Berger writes, is incredibly
inspiring. I have spent two days with his book
this week. He is real, depth, and insight, from
a personal, felt, and found, point of view. Real-
understanding, care, authority, in knowing,
through love. Referencing others, and drawing
upon his own experiences.
In my notes, I have written - (later.) - do.
I'm not sure what this will mean. My own
experiences, doing, allowing my writing, to come
I have also written a word that he uses -
I looked it up - I have the oxford dictionary
on my old phone. Instead, the word - denude
strip of covering, make bare.
The series, the use of the sequence, leads to Hogarth.
Rake's progress - from Picasso, drawing in sequence,
in time, a series. Hogarth, telling a story. An
event, told in frames.
And, the David Hockney versions
Storytelling, sequence. How the drawn, becomes time.
Events, passing, linear, the inclusion of narrative,
across multiple images. The frame.
The Hockney works re-tell the story. Bring
the works into the present day, in content,
style, and form. The work, has an immediacy,
an impact. Visually strong, striking, loved, raw.
The expression of the hand, the line.
Rake's Progress Images.
Rake's - Credit