HXH – Small Drawings

The Lescaze Curve – First Drawings

First thoughts toward an exhibition of work commissioned by the National Trust in response to High Cross House, a modernist house designed by the Swiss American architect William Lescaze for Mr. Curry, the first Headmaster of Dartington School in the 1930s.

A Significant Curve

Exhibition  at High Cross House, Dartington,  September to November 2013.

When I was invited to exhibit at High Cross House I had only seen photographs of the building and I was fairly convinced, given that my current work has revealed an obsession with straight lines that I would concentrate on the rectangle, the square and the orchestration of windows and doors piercing the fabric of the building.  On my first visit the first thing that totally threw me was the blue of the walls and secondly the curve.  I spent a day drawing and photographing and absorbing the feel of the building and its daily life, the coming and going of visitors, artists, curators and musicians.  Once back in the studio I started to draw endlessly trying to make the straight lines, the rectangles of void and solid work on paper.  It was only when I allowed the curve to seep into the drawings that they started to take off.  There was something immensely seductive about this curve.  It was like an embrace drawing into its arms the two sides of this stark modernist structure. It nestled between the high straight thin walls connecting them, the egg shape from which they had emerged, the seed pod from which they had grown tall and strong.  There was also the sense of space – sometimes the curve was a negative space sometimes a positive one, calling attention to its function as an inside or an outside wall. As an outside wall it was itself situated within another space.  As an inside wall it became the space itself, the boundary, the edge of the available area, nurturing and protective.  I haven’t finished with the curve yet, this is just the beginning.  It offers me the sense of not being able to see round the bend to what is happening down the road.  So I am on this journey and am open to where it leads me.