Nigel Hall

Untitled Drawing


Not on display

Nigel Hall born 1943
Charcoal on paper
Support: 555 × 762 mm
frame: 560 × 775 × 25 mm
Purchased 1974

Catalogue entry

Nigel Hall b.1943

T01845 Untitled Drawing 1973

Inscribed ‘Nigel Hall.73’ b.r.
Charcoal on paper, 32 x 23 (81.3 x 58.4).
Purchased from the Felicity Samuel Gallery (Grant-in-Aid) 1974.
Exh: Felicity Samuel Gallery, January–March 1974 (no catalogue, repr. on invitation card).

The artist has written of this work (letter of 12 April 1974): ‘The drawing was made in November 1973 and formed part of what could be loosely called a series. They are connected not so much by a recognisable visual configuration as by a common involvement in exploring spatial intervals. Apart from the seven drawings in the exhibition [cf. Exh.] I made approximately twenty others related to them.

‘The basic concept was concerned with finding a way in which structure and content could be more closely integrated and parallels can be found in the prints and in several of the sculptures. For example, in the “Miniature Etching”, the edge of the plate was cut in lengthening castellations along top and bottom, and the distances between them formed the vertical lengths within the ground. Any slight change in the plate edge would result in changes in the internal organisations. Similarly, in a sculpture like “Crest” the determining factor was the horizontal rod which angled out from the wall. The space between this rod and the wall was the reference for all the other marks the piece contained. This was the case in two other sculptures in that exhibition.

‘Therefore in the drawing, the spaced horizontal band at the top of the sheet is restated by the fine lines at the bottom.

‘The use of charcoal as a medium is partly determined by the nature of the material, as a description of the working process might make clear. The first important aspect is the relationship between black and white marks. All the white marks are the paper and not applied paint. There is therefore a consistency between the white border and the varied white marks within the black. The spaced marks at the top were the first to be located and from these were determined the lower lines, which were impressed below the paper surface. The black was then gradually built up around at times threatening to overwhelm and swamp the delicate whites. Up to ten layers of charcoal with fixative between each is applied using a consistent diagonal stroke resulting in a dense but variegated surface.’

Published in The Tate Gallery Report 1972–1974, London 1975.


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