The images from 1 to 6 are part of a body of work completed for the exhibition ‘Apertures and Anxieties’ at the RHA, Dublin 2011. The exhibition celebrated Trinity School of Medicine’s 300th anniversary. Over the duration of two years I had permission to visit the Anatomy department and draw from the donor bodies. I lecture drawing at the Crawford Collage of Art and Design on the Fine Art and Design BA Hons degree programme, mostly I teach with a life model and therefore moving from the life room to the anatomy theatre was extraordinary. I investigated their joint historical relationship and pedagogic function. This informed me as a life drawer as well as a tutor. Drawing from a donor body questioned my mortality and seemed to collapse time.
Nos. 2 and 3 were drawn directly from the donor body and depict a ‘spot exam’ which medical students undertake. Nos. 1 and 4 are part of a drawn response to the research I did of anatomy manuals.
The act of learning how to draw demands the acquisition of visual perceptual skills, No. 7 is part of an exploration confronting those skills by ‘un-doing ‘ an exercise that is meant to develop them and therefore reveals their existence in an unpredictable way.
Nos. 8,9,10 are examples of my ‘life work’ and botanical studies. Drawing is about time and movement and this always reveals itself when I draw from direct observation for a duration.
I draw to connect to the outside world and dialogue with an unseen one.
Drawing is a tool of communication and perception and it’s ontological nature means that the unknown is perpetually encountered. As a medium to teach and learn it has a finite set of rules and as a medium to think through and make work from it has infinite application which I find totally engaging.