28 March to 12 May 2024
The Dobell Drawing Prize is Australia’s leading prize for drawing, an unparalleled celebration of technique, innovation, and expanded approaches to drawing by acclaimed and emerging drawing practitioners. The biennial prize began 30 years ago at the Art Gallery of New South Wales in 1993 as the Dobell Prize for Drawing and is now presented by the National Art School in partnership with the Sir William Dobell Art Foundation.
The Dobell Drawing Prize #23 touring exhibition showcases over 45 finalist artworks that respond to the Prize’s fundamental question: what is drawing? The answers are compelling, challenging, and exhilarating, in an astonishing array of mediums and materials, from traditional pencil and graphite on paper to salt, staples and rust; from resin, fibreglass, enamel and wood to intricate three-dimensional wire objects; bodily video performance to sculptural forms built with tea bags and bamboo. The exhibition is a vital tribute to the human ingenuity and imagination that arises from the simple act of making a mark and represents a singular gauge for the breadth and dynamism of current drawing practices in Australia.
“Whether it be a scrawled map, a line in the sand, the scratch of a burnt stick across a cave wall or a digital record of the movement of a stylus, that simple evidence of an intentional touch is fundamental to what drawing is. This compulsion to leave a mark is a very human desire, and the profound and extensive potential of drawing emerges from it.” – Dr Maryanne Coutts, Head of Drawing, National Art School.
Image credit: Julie Rrap,Drawn Out(detail), 2022, Video, 12 mins, 160 x 280 cm (dimensions variable). Courtesy the artist, Roslyn Oxley9 Gallery, Sydney and Arc One Gallery, Melbourne.