Bill Anastasi: Travelling drawings

Bill Anastasi has created a series of aleatoric drawings based on movement. By using his arm as a human version of a seismograph, Anastasi creates line drawings that extend the gesture of ‘moving through space’. The series includes:

‘walking drawings’ – a series of drawings created from the movement of walking.

‘pocket drawings’ – a series of drawings created by a pencil and paper being placed in his pocket and making drawings as he moves or sits.

‘The subway drawings’ –  a series of drawings produced whilst travelling on the subway by placing a board on his lap and allowing a pencil to extend the gestures and movement of the train as it moves along the tracks.

The ‘subway drawings’ were developed when Anastasi met John Cage every day to play chess. Cage recalled him travelling on the subway to meet him wearing headphones; he’d bring headphones without music, and papers and a board to draw on, and pencils and so fourth, and he’ll make a drawing with his eyes closed, and his arms responding to the movement of the subway car’.

his arm is responding to extrinsic forces, not  asking gestures as much as extending, or representing the subways gestures. By closing ones eyes whilst completing these drawings, one is able to separate themselves from the aesthetic decisions that often dictate, and plague creative practice.

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