National Drawing Annual publication was conceived as an extension
of Manifest's Drawing Center mission. Its goal is to support
the recognition, documentation, and publication of excellent,
current, and relevant works of drawing in the United States
Manifest’s call for entries to the first annual NDA received
nearly 300 submissions from across the U.S. Artists from a total of
22 states, and the United Kingdom submitted work to be considered.
Through a rigorous jury process these were reduced to 48 works by 26
states and the United Kingdom to be featured
in the sixty-eight page full-color publication.
This supplemental resource offers biographical information and artist's
statements for each of the 26 artists included in the exhibition-in-print.
One image from each artist is also provided for reference relative
to their information.
as I learned it, became a valid and collectible art form
in the high renaissance. It was the proliferation of paper,
not pencils, that made it so available, and the proliferation
of genius and personality that made the marks they created
so desirable. Collectible creative spontaneity and the true
age of modern drawing began here.
However, as we all know, drawing as a form of communication, research,
and documentation is ancient. Perhaps even religious ceremony found
its first prehistoric home in the drawn scrawlings of some impassioned
cave dweller. Stone, clay, papyrus, skin (both living and dead), canvas,
wood pulp, cotton fiber, cathode ray tubes, string, LCD panels, laser
light beams, and ethereal smoke in the sky have all been the history
of the medium.
This reminds us that drawing is not merely the results of an activity
- a product. Nor is it just an academic exercise designed to build
skill. Rather it is this and more, and includes the act of perceiving,
analyzing, and contemplating through a visual, emotional, mental, and
physical process things both observed and conceived.
The origins of the word draw are, in every way linked to the word and
concept of drag. In its simplest definition drawing (the act) is the
process of dragging an instrument across a surface to make a line.
A drawing is an image or sign made in such a way, primarily of lines.
It is an act of delineation – of a concept, form, or image. In
this way, interestingly enough, it is inseparable from writing, and
therefore something that nearly everyone does.
Today we have loosened our definition to include less than obvious
variations. However, drawings today usually retain some aspect of the
simple definition. They are frequently linear, or made with dry media,
or made on paper, but not always.
Our goal at Manifest, among many, is to champion drawing as a rich
and culturally significant art form, as well as a way of learning about
life and viewing the world. With the National Drawing Annual,
we are fulfilling this goal by establishing a yearly publication that
documents just what drawing is today in all its varied and evolving
forms. We offer the NDA exhibit-in-print as a margin for excellence
and as a record of, and reward for, the passionate and sincere efforts
of artists making drawings in the world today.
Executive Director, Manifest