Richard Serra: Drawings

by ImperfectLine


Currently exhibiting at the David Zwirner Gallery is blue chip staple Richard Serra. Entitled Drawings, the show, comprised mainly of the works on paper executed in paintstick, etching ink, silica and range in size. Serra began making similar images while still a student at UC Berkeley and Yale University, and they continued to play an important role in his artistic process throughout his life. Whether small or large in scale, all of the drawings share an immediacy of gesture and an economy of means that reflect the artist’s ongoing interest in exploring the potential of drawing as a medium.

The works on view also reveal Serra’s lifelong engagement with the history of art, from his early appropriations of the imagery of Abstract Expressionism to his more recent interest in the work of Late Renaissance and Baroque artists. In the late 1960s and early 1970s, for example, Serra made a series of “verb” drawings that directly reference the gesture and mark-making of Abstract Expressionist painters such as Jackson Pollock, Willem de Kooning, and Mark Rothko. In other words, he pays tribute to specific artists and artworks, including a group of small images inspired by Francisco Goya’s The Disasters of War (1810–20) and a large drawing based on a detail from Peter Paul Rubens’s Portrait of Eleonora Gonzaga (1606).

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