My interest in non-traditional drawing began in an undergraduate course called Experimental Drawing and continued through graduate school. The blog Expanded is dedicated to presenting diverse drawing practices happening around the region that I live, Baltimore/Washington D.C.; country (United States), and world. It is a framework for consideration of what a drawing can be. The goal was also to create a space where artists, educators, and other organizations can reference and form dialogues.
In 2010, I participated in an exhibition entitled Drawing in the Expanded Field at Clara Hatton Gallery, University of Colorado. After research, “expanded” was clearly a term used in many contemporary drawing shows and college courses. Five years later, it is the title of this blog.
Historically, drawings were made to plan a painting or sculpture. Over time drawing emerged as an art form in and of itself. Traditional drawing is concerned with representation of subject matter. Nontraditional, on the other hand, employs strategies to explore concepts.
While the artists on Expanded often contrast each other, their core is the same. They all work unconventionally and push the boundaries of how to see and experience drawing. Artists who have participated typically work in or with 3D/installation, systems, process, performance, photography, technology, and experimental mark making. Contributor Brent Fogt allows weather conditions to create his drawings. Gelah Penn’s installations extend the language of drawing into architectural space.
Most often featured work is conceptually based and combines philosophies and styles in the most unusual ways. Marks accumulate in Monica Supe’s 3D and performative works. The artist engages in handicrafts that “visualize the working process”. Woven lines make time visible. One questions when the activity starts and if it ever really ends. On Expanded, artists’ works are open to seeing what can happen.
Often, I think of the Experimental Drawing course that sparked my interest in the subject at hand and how the contributors are so dedicated to their practices. My professor, Herb Olds, would sit in front of the class, telling us, “Drawing is a language. We have to keep that language alive.” The language has since taken many forms.
Nicole Lenzi‘s interest in nontraditional drawing began in an undergraduate course called Experimental Drawing. She earned B.F.A. from Carnegie Mellon University in 1995 and an M.F.A. from the Maryland Institute College of Art in 2007. She takes a multi-dimensional approach that includes installations, 3D, relief, and 2D works. Recent exhibits include Concept and Time and Space at CICA Museum, Seoul, South Korea; and Drawing Lines Across Mediums at Site: Brooklyn, Brooklyn, NY. Lenzi has maintained a blog on contemporary drawing, Expanded, since 2015 and is based in Baltimore, MD