I started this Participatory Drawing Project during “Dance Anywhere”, a worldwide dance and movement event held each year during one specific day in March. The drawing was left on the wall at the Kala Art Institute in Berkeley for an extended period of time, inviting Kala’s artist community to participate. The drawing progressed slowly but steadily, and I finally finished it, picking up on the various pattern ideas that had been started by other artists. It was interesting as well as challenging to respond to their “hand-writing” in my own drawing.
These drawings base on very simple guidelines – a circular pen gesture and a focus on texture and abstract patterns, rather than form and object. This ensures coherence for the overall drawing, while the individual hand adds to the diversity of patterns and contributes to liveliness and success of the drawing. Participants are encouraged to play with density and openness – concentrated dark areas versus loose brighter areas. It is suggested that they move across the canvas in their drawing effort, rather than restricting themselves to a certain area of the paper. The idea is to create a rounded piece rather than a sketchbook-like accumulation of individual drawings.
The drawings take place on very large sheets of paper (cut from wide rolls), which are taped to a wall or to the ground. We work with fine tip artist pens filled with black Indian ink.
The drawing process is meant to be relaxing and meditative. The drawings can be performed in silence, or with music.