For Drawing Now 2018, Cob Gallery are pleased to exhibit a presentation of four London based female artists. All four artists are known for their distinct figurative styles.
Cat Roissetter’s (focus artist) small figurative works are the result of a laborious mixed media technique which employ a variety of coloured pencil, graphite and pencil. For Roissetter, drawing is a form of catharsis, which she uses to excavate her childhood memories. Distortion through the denigration of materials is integral to her creative process and central to her unique visual language - Roissetter’s drawing method involves subjecting the paper to a blend of destructive processes from acid baths, sun bleaching and rot, before she neurotically works into them as drawings. Through layers of sooty graphite, intricately detailed limbs, figures and faces hover and float. Often, Roissetter distorts just enough, leaving an intriguing peephole into a parallel universe, a crumb for the viewer's imagination like the failing memory of vivid dreams. Reminiscent of the mysterious drawing cycles by Henry Darger, Roissetter's works emerge as depictions that read somewhere between nursery-rhyme and nightmare. Her drawings are typified by groupings of infants, with her source material ranging from a personal archive of family photography and and historical children’s book illustrations. This ambiguously nostalgic material re-emerges in the finished works, noted by the artist Jake Chapman, as being ‘mechanically stripped from some unknown elsewhere’.
Nina Mae Fowler is known for her sumptuously detailed large-scale pencil and graphite drawings. Pre-occupied with Hollywood’s ‘Golden Age’, Fowler treats the era as a crucible of our own, and the recognisable characters she depicts act as metaphors through which she interrogates contemporary notions of celebrity, beauty, violence, exploitation, sexuality and abuse of power. Across her practice, Fowler seeks ways in which to push the potential of drawing as artistic medium, whilst balancing an academic finesse in her technique with a masterful ability to think beyond the two dimensional realms of the picture plane most often associated with drawing and portraiture.
Sexuality is at the forefront of Alba Hodsoll’s graphic ink works, where crisp lines combine with the negative space of the paper itself to produce a distinctive vision of human physicality. Piecing together bodily fragments, Entangled figures appear out of gaps, creases, slits and cracks, and the spaces between them represent painted expressions of intimacy.
Sometimes reminiscent of Picasso’s Vollard Suite, Faye Wei Wei’s images quiver with a lively, lyrical motion, combining classical poise with vibrant immediacy. Often revolving around spiritual iconography and classical myth, love rituals and the theatricality of gender, her works sometimes suggest the themes of particular mythic narratives, and at other moments seem to depart into a more ambiguous, interior space of incongruity and uncertainty.