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|Blaze Smoke on Glass|
Rokeby's fourth exhibition of 2006 brings together two British artists whose practice stems from an interest in and investigation of drawing, the processes involved and the histories associated with it.
Tim Knowles creates drawings independent of his own hand, using elaborate apparatus or time consuming practices. Interested in the process of drawing Knowles invents experimental and playful procedures to introduce chance and unpredictability into his work. Often he will employ and expose mans relationship to nature, in an ongoing series which will feature in the exhibition, Knowles attaches pens to the tips of branches of various trees; placing paper in front of them he allows the chance movement of the wind to dictate the composition of the final drawing. The artist surrenders final control of the work, questioning the authority of the artist whilst allowing the fundamental and primordial characteristics associated with drawing to be communicated.
This acceptance of drawing as a process and an experimental medium allows Catherine Morland's practice to investigate ways of seeing and to question the manner in which we view and order the world around us. Using smoke, soot, light and water, Morland's work evokes the unstable quality of our vision. Drawings on glass are made with smoke, which are installed using light to project the images onto the wall, the projections of which appear fragile and temporal or as after images or recalled memories.
For Knowles it is crucial that the viewer understands the process of production and so he presents his homemade apparatus next to the drawings or includes documentation in an installation. The tree drawings are presented as diptychs, with the drawing displayed opposite a photo of the tree that created it. Morland too is keen to utilize manmade apparatus in her installations and projections in which she uses rotating, flickering and dissolving light to reveal fragments of an image. Like the physical act of drawing, immediacy is denied and the illusory quality of drawing is exposed.
If Catherine Morland refers to the optical innovations of the nineteenth century in her work, Tim Knowles is interested in scientific logic. He makes visible the invisible, be it the path drawn by the moons reflection on undulating water, the forces at work within a car as it drives around Brands Hatch Circuit ñ a new work for the exhibition - or the wind as it moves branches with pens attached to them; all rely on the logic of cause and effect. Each artist reveals the fundamental qualities and range of drawing; as a map of time and a record of actions, whether governed by chance or stemming from memories.
Both Knowles and Morland will present new work for the exhibition. Tim Knowles will create a large scale tree drawing where multiple pens are tied to the tips of tree branches, as the tree sways in the wind the pens draw onto a panel of paper below. These will be presented alongside, amongst other things, works from a recently completed series of Full Moon photographs which document the path drawn by each of the twelve annual full moons reflected on undulating water, which although completely beyond the artists control are reminiscent of Surrealist photographic experiments.
Catherine Morland is creating new smoke drawings for the exhibition, on both glass and layered within Perspex boxes. Another recent development in the artists work, not seen before, are etchings onto glass which incorporate the resultant shadows into the drawing.
Catherine Morland graduated from the Royal College of Art in 2003 she has exhibited extensively in the UK and is currently working on a project in the South Pole. Tim Knowles graduated from Bath College of Higher Education in 1992 and has exhibited internationally in countries such as Italy, America, Latvia and Austria. His work is currently included in the Hayward Gallery Touring exhibition You'll Never Know and Our House is a House that Moves at the Living Art Museum, Reykjavik.