Greig Burgoyne is a artist who specialises in site-specific drawing. Here he discusses the process behind his work including his most recent: bad drawing/ paper cell.
Each project I do is unique to the space its for. Gapfillers at Wasps Briggait spaces last year was a 5 day 40hr drawing performance that took the idiosyncrasies of the front of house project spaces as its starting point. It was an exhibition that united repetition, accumulation and endurance alongside specific references to the site.
I‘m keen to bridge the anomalies between the spaces organisation and the interrelation dynamics of moving in and around those same spaces. I worked out how many pairs of post it notes would fill the gap between the length of one space and the other. I would then apply this rule to making marks that occur across a regular gap between pairs of post-it notes in an accumulative act of repetition, I continue this until the post-its don’t stick and fall off. As an outcome the resulting wall drawings led by their rules and processes, in seeking to fill those anomalies within the site may in fact be renouncing itself in the very act of extolling its presence. In doing so Gapfillers may be less a ‘fullness of space ‘and instead a ‘fullness of emptiness’.
Scapelands at DrawingBox Belgium sought to extend and immerse the viewer in what exists between what Blanchot refers to as the ‘two spheres that didn’t know each other, two moments in time perhaps entirely foreign to each other and yet coming together within their shared foreignness’. This could be identified as the body meeting the site and how one activates it. The spaces were measured with A4 sheets that were numbered then were rolled up, the last sheet rolled up determined where the ‘rolled space’ would be placed. Alongside this, a system of drawing 1000’s of coloured squares (done in the order of the dryboard markers as they come in the packets). The rule was the first line of squares (which was based on the length of the doorway or pillar opposite etc.) would determine how many rows of squares should be made, that would determine the next block of squares until only one square was left. The result was two bodies of work, one extending an imploded space, the other an expanded activation of space.
Of late the performative element sees me interrogate the conceptual framework of drawing, from drawing as a means to cover, to a form of grafting of one space onto another through absurd acts measuring space.
This is best seen in the bad drawing/ paper cell for The Prison drawing project in March this year where I presented a film grafted onto the space that is the cell. It takes the notion of drawing as an act of covering and form of measurement, in an immersive act of attempted liberation. Measuring using rolls of paper, the film chronicles what could be seen as a bad day wallpapering a space, no assistants, paste or ladders just a desire to cover and negate the cell. Only stopping when exhausted, I’m offering up to the viewer a spectacle of endurance undaunted by a failure doomed from the start. In my attempts to be free of the cell, I’m potentially submerged in the paper as a result. The outcome is a film projected across the cell walls that unites the tension between the restricted, solid space with a fluidity and potential of the performative act. Consequently, the solid and static of the prison cell could be in doubt and liberation maybe indeed may be possible.
I only use office materials ranging from post-it notes to highlighter pens and photocopy paper alongside process led, rule based repetition, endurance, accumulation and duration. Taking anomalies of the space, I’m seeking to test or expand alternative body/site relations with regard to space and thinking. The results in the form of wall drawing, films, performances and installations, propose new dialogues and frameworks that aim to generate a condition of becoming, translation and flux instead of stasis; a site of experience rather than merely location.
I’ve a bookwork coming out next month on my project/residency/ /exhibition WhiteNoise, which took place at The Centre for Recent Drawing in London last year, published by marmalade visual theory in London, I’m showing some performances in Concept at Czong Institute of Contemporary Art (CICA) in South Korea next month, other projects this year include commissions for a walking drawing/ game in France and another for a cultural Centre in France where I’m working with a Brussels based dance company that will result in a series of wall drawing works and live performances where they wear the drawings quite literally albeit the ‘outfits’ so to speak will resemble nothing akin to clothing.
Looking for more blogs? Visit here.