Using Ball Point

Seminar 07-31-2009 #2

Ball point pens are not just for doodling anymore. That’s the word from the Aldrich Museum in Ridgefield, CT, where they have an exhibit of ball point works as part of their currently running “Extreme Drawing” show. Is this news from the cutting edge of what it is all about in the art world? If it is, it may be the first time in my life that I have been at that cutting edge. Usually “cutting edge” for me means I need a haircut. I have been drawing with ball point pens for years, but admittedly rarely for “serious drawing.” I began to take the medium more seriously when I came across a show by Ikeda Tatsuo who uses ball point along with watercolor to do fantasy commentaries of contemporary life. And, while I now draw regularly and “seriously” with ball point, I started doing so originally as a defense against crashingly boring meetings that I was forced to endure as the price for dealing with a “day job” that I could barely stand. Far better to draw with a ball point pen, I reasoned, than to stab yourself with one when you need to work for a deceitful, self-aggrandizing clown. The drawing above is a case in point. It was during a two day seminar the content of which was forgotten as soon as it was over. Those days are thankfully behind me now. But, I still do the drawings.

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About mmgilbert

I have been drawing and painting all my life. Now part of the “New Symbolist” movement which encompasses both Goth, fantasy and tattoo art as well as the century-old work of Odilon Redon, I focus on archetypal and mythic imagery to evoke emotional themes and to reference darker fantasies. I have an abiding interest in figurative drawing, working on paper and exploring new ways to handle traditional materials. I studied with Edward Millman, a WPA muralist; at Purchase College; and at the Art Students League in New York.
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