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  October 21st - December 1st, 2007
Opening reception Sunday October 21st, 1 - 5 pm

DM contemporary is pleased to present “DRAWING NOW: AN EXPLORATION”, a drawing show that explores the art form today, by focusing on the drawings of eight artists: Annabel Daou, Mary Judge, Tamiko Kawata, Nancy Manter, Karen Margolis, Eung Ho Park, Frances Richardson, and Karen Schiff, who are energizing the medium by challenging it, changing our perception of it, and redefining contemporary drawing by pushing its boundaries in fresh, new directions. All eight artists practice drawing as their primary medium – or one of their primary mediums – in which their ideas, concepts, emotions or visions materialize, in techniques, imagery, sizes, and styles that vary widely.

Annabel Daou, a Lebanese-American artist, uses language and the written word as the basis of her drawings. By transliterating into Arabic historically significant texts, sentences or words that draw upon American history or Pop culture, she questions the very nature of language, communication and meaning, and provokes political and cultural reflection. In her work “the constitution, because you asked”, the US constitution is transliterated into Arabic, and though phonetically correct, the words written in Arabic have no meaning at all. In fact, the text is meaningless to anyone who doesn’t speak both English and Arabic, and it disintegrates furthermore as the paper itself is cut and torn fragmenting the very ground that holds it together. Mary Judge masterfully exploits the “spolvero” technique – a Renaissance technique in which powder pigment is pounced through a perforated stencil to transfer a drawing to another surface – to create dynamic, forceful patterns of astounding beauty and simplicity on surfaces as varied as paper, canvas, board and stone, among others. The patterns are aesthetic interpretations inspired by various sources such as script, Andalusian architecture, and Amish Hex signs, as her titles reveal, pared down to their basic elements. The repeating, rhythmic lines that sweep across the surface and form those patterns, are generated by small repeated dots of powder pigment that get deposited through the holes. Sometimes, loose pigment settles unintentionally causing a smoky effect, and adding interest and mystery to the work. Tamiko Kawata’s drawings have developed in the past few years in parallel with her three dimensional and installation work with everyday objects. In fact, the cardboard drawings began as an extension of that work, since cardboard was all around her: in the streets of New York City, in her studio, and in her home, and since the tactile qualities of the material were perfectly suited for her purposes. Her markings on cardboard range from conventional methods of drawing, such as pastels and charcoal, to marks made with hammers, chisels, knives, and her own fingers. The drawings are direct expressions of her feelings and thoughts, akin to entries in a diary or a sincere letter to a loved one in which one pours one’s soul. Nancy Manter acts in and on the landscape by leaving her mark upon it. Whether by skiing and leaving tracks in the snow, dragging her feet on the grass, or using her car to make skid marks on the road, Manter’s marks or “environmental drawings” are then photographed to record the traces of human interaction – mostly hers – with the environment. Even though the results appear in digital photographs, her drawings remain central in her overall practice. In a paper pulp drawing, also included in the exhibit, Manter draws with her skis on the fresh wet pulp, leaving track marks in the resulting sheet of paper. Karen Margolis, inspired by scans that map the brain, generates her own color coded system of dots, which correspond to topographical maps of the mind. The drawings, in watercolor, gouache, and graphite – and sometimes thread – are composed of clusters of dots in varying colors and sizes that are optically stunning. In other works, Margolis makes marks by burning holes in layers of Abaca paper, resulting in the creation of ‘channels’. Blockages in these channels interrupt the flow and cause tensions – visually and metaphorically. Eung Ho Park ponders the notion of origin and identity inspired by a cluster of exposed roots in a series of delicate, repetitive line drawings entitled, ‘Root Series’. These drawings, in ballpoint on paper, originated a few years ago as a result of an encounter with an uprooted tree in a Brooklyn park. As the exposed roots of the tree lay in front of him, bare and vulnerable, he reminisced about the ginseng roots of his native Korea, suddenly feeling his own vulnerability as a Korean uproot. In his most recent drawings, the root clusters take on recognizable forms, like manicured hedges and evergreens, perhaps ironically playing with misunderstood aspects of his own mixed culture. Frances Richardson’s three drawings in this exhibit are of circular grey fields formed from plus (+) and minus (-) signs that fade and appear, rotate and move, and create rhythms on a surface that seems to float independently from the surface of the paper. Using lead pencils of varying density to attain the subtle gradations, and rotating the axis of the cross marks and dashes, just slightly, to form tracks that curve and meander, Richardson achieves an overall effect that is topographic with symmetrical patterns that could suggest magnetic forces, electrical pulses or even organic influences. Her drawings, however, bear their dates as titles to elude literal meanings and avoid specific associations. Karen Schiff’s ‘Laid Line Drawings” are composed of pencil or ink marks tracing the lines that exist in laid paper. These lines get formed as a result of the papermaking mold’s impression on the paper itself during the manufacturing process. Schiff ‘realistically’ represents the surface of the paper by revealing and articulating the lines in it, though the resulting drawings are totally abstract. The titles of the ink drawings reflect their abstract character, hence they are called “untitled”, first – but since each evokes an image in the artist’s mind, they are suggestively subtitled.

There will be an artist talk November 15th at 11 a.m., which will be held at 148 Roger Canoe Hollow Road in Mill Neck, NY. The talk is free and open to the public, but registration is necessary as seating is limited. For directions and further information please contact Doris Mukabaa by phone (516) 922-3552, or email

DM Contemporary, Box 263 Mill Neck New York 11765 TEL: 516 922 3552