ideal drawing

critical text of the solo exhibition Desenho Ideal. 2014

 

 

Drawing is a way of thinking. This phrase, often repeated by the celebrated american artist Richard Serra, has its broadest sense when we consider the fact that we can see, in the last decades, a kind of enhancement of artistic production processes, so that they, in recent development of contemporary art, acquired such an importance as the result of the artistic work itself. And that, therefore, once and for all took the drawing - procedural form par excellence - off its supporting condition to position it as one of the most effective and urgent artistic expressions of today.

 

But if drawing is a way of thinking, and in view of the proliferating discourse and mental manifestations in the current artistic production, it would be perfectly plausible to occur that the very act of thinking might be a way to draw. The demonstration of how such insight could be addressed may be what comes to propose the solo exhibition Desenho Ideal (Ideal Drawing) from the artist Tchelo.

 

In this exhibition the artist presents a series of works in which the drawing does not exists only as an appearance on paper, or an embodiment in any other type of support. Curiously, the drawing here is never obvious. What always prevails is a suggestion of a drawing. And as suggested, it invariably ends up being resolved not in a stand or space, but in the mind of the viewer. In that indefinable moment when the idea of a drawing is captured, forming a suggested mental image, the spectator ceases to be a mere viewer to become co-creator of the work.

 

This is evident especially in the installation Ligue os Pontos (Connect the Dots). In this work, the artist suggests possible imaginary lines, which, intertwined by the mental union of points drawn on each wall of a labyrinth, form a supposed drawing that can actually change according to the possible paths that the viewer/participant follows. When, and if, this drawing is set, it will be only in the mind of the viewer.

 

Another baffling example are the works of the series Faça Você Mesmo (Do It Yourself). In them, the artist seems to infer that what connects the ideas contained in a series of images on a continuum is not just an imaginary line, but a line of thought, the end of which always comes to a conclusion.

 

Not so obvious, but no less challenging, is the work called Linhas de Montagem (Assembly Lines), in which the artist appropriates wooden plates, positioning them in space. What makes this work a drawing and not a sculpture? Again, the answer is in the dual track between the suggestive artist's look and the participating public's look.

 

Even at a point in history in which we openly discuss difficult issues such as the dematerialization of the art work, to think of a drawing that essentially exists as an idea is no easy task. After all, the only art form in which the thought is not accompanied by matter is the music. On the other hand, the most important in these musings, and we hope that this exhibition will contribute to it, may be the possibility to find in art a source of articulation of ideas beyond the boundaries of art itself, putting us all not only as thinkers of art, but as thinkers of life.

 

 

Fábio Leão