13.Apr - 6.Jul 2024
William Christenberry: Drawings
30.Jun - 2.Sep 2017
Exhibitions > William Christenberry: Drawings
From June 30 until September 2 Galerie Julian Sander presents William Christenberry: Drawings. This exhibition takes a closer look at how drawing formed a foundational part of Christenberry’s artistic process although it is a relatively unknown and underestimated aspect of his work.
Born in 1936 in Tuscaloosa, AL, Christenberry started his artistic career by studying painting at the University of Alabama where he received both his BFA and MA. Although he is most well known for his haunting color photographs of landscapes, signs, and abandoned structures in rural Alabama, he continued making paintings and sculptures throughout his life. He also taught painting and drawing at the Corcoran School of Arts in Washington D.C.
Every piece of Christenberry’s art seems to be connected to a story or one of his experiences. The organic forms in this exhibition are barely recognizable as any particular plant. The gestural movement, sparse lines and sure strokes of ink forms visible on paper made with pens, brushes and even chopsticks bear witness to Christenberry’s expressive visual canon. All of these elements carry the study of time and memory that are visible throughout his career.
„My work as an artist includes drawing, painting, sculpture, and photography. Each medium is a part of the total expression of my deep feelings about where I’m from, and about how I care about how we, as human beings, leave our touches, positively and negatively, on the things around us.“
Besides the Tree paintings, artworks such as Memory Form, 5 Cents or Abandoned House in Field (graphite/watercolor on paper) build a direct connection to his photographic work. Christenberry visited the same places year for year during his regular trips to Alabama to take pictures. From these color photographs came paintings and drawings and, later, also three-dimensional miniature constructions. By repeatedly picturing the same basic shapes and structures over and over again, Christenberry recorded the slow shifts in the environments he knew. “I find beauty in things that are old and changing, like we all are changing,” he stated in 1982 during an interview. “I find old things more beautiful than the new, and I go back to them every year until sooner or later they are gone. They have blown away, burned, fallen down or … disappeared.”
The opening will be on June 29, from 5-9 pm. In reminiscence of the artist, we serve William Christenberry’s favorite drink. The exhibition will remain on view through September 2, 2017.