A female, neck up visible, wearing a flower petal necklace, looking out. Behind her are green leaves.

17 March – 28 August 2022

Room 90

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Some of the most compelling emerging talents in the field of contemporary drawing were displayed alongside highlights from the Museum's collection, dating back to the early 1500s.

Emerging artists are taking the medium of drawing in new directions – using innovative approaches, methods and media. This exhibition spanned a wide range of techniques and practices, including drawings using make-up on face wipes by Sin Wai Kin fka Victoria Sin, and a drawing made with chalk collected from the White Cliffs of Dover by Josephine Baker. The exhibition included artists who have lived, studied or worked in the UK.

Several artists showed how drawing, often considered a quiet or private medium, can be used to protest injustice. Catherine Anyango Grünewald has described the time and labour invested in her monumental drawings as a 'direct homage' to their subjects, often the victims of institutional crimes, while the painstaking detail of Irish artist Miriam de Búrca's drawings of clods of earth from cilliní – the unmarked graves of those deemed unfit for Christian burial – force us to confront an uncomfortable history.

Over 20 new acquisitions were shown for the first time alongside some of the most celebrated works from the Museum's collection by the likes of Andy Warhol, Käthe Kollwitz, Odilon Redon, Mary Delany and Michelangelo, demonstrating their continuities with the existing collection, and their relationships to historical traditions of drawing. These artists included some of the youngest ever collected by the Museum during their lifetime, and represented some of the most exciting up-and-coming names in the field of contemporary drawing.


Made possible with Art Fund support

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