Luminous Line: Contemporary Drawings in Metalpoint

This exhibition brings together the work of eleven contemporary artists who embrace a drawing technique that flourished during the High Renaissance and has recently experienced a rebirth among those who love the immediacy of drawing. Using a metal stylus or a small sliver of copper, brass, silver, platinum or gold, these artists apply metal directly to specially prepared papers. Their drawings are distinctive for the luminous traces of metal that add a telltale glimmer to the surface. While the Old Masters such as Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael, Filippino Lippi, Botticelli and Dürer used metalpoint to render precise portraits or nature studies in exquisite detail, artists today take a less constrained approach. The work in “Luminous Lines” ranges from realistic — even trompe l’oeil drawings — to gestural abstraction. From Fran Siegel’s aerial views of Los Angeles to Susan Schwalb’s abstract compositions referencing the earth’s geologic strata, the artists in this exhibition have dedicated themselves to a drawing practice that requires controlled draftsmanship and allows for open-ended exploration and freedom of expression in spite of its inherent limitations.

The artists included are:

  • Steve Comba *
  • Howard Hack *
  • Marietta Hoferer
  • Michael Kukla
  • Cynthia Lin
  • Morgan O’Hara
  • Ben Polsky
  • Lucy Pullen
  • Carol Prusa
  • Susan Schwalb
  • Fran Siegel *

* indicates a CA artist

Photos from the Exhibition on Flickr