The drawings shown on this website are the product of the last 10 years and spring from large acrylic paintings on canvas that I was doing previously. I was applying lines on flat colored backgrounds using a ruling pen that could hold acrylic paint when mixed with an acrylic flow-release medium. Now, with space and time considerations, I’ve switched to the much more direct medium of pen and ink, pursuing the clichés and conceits of the architectural profession as well as the energy and the use of new materials.
I’m an architecture enthusiast but a non-participant. It’s so much more comfortable to practice without clients (and without a license). It also looks like I’ve drifted into city planning (but so has everyone else, to witness developments in lower Manhattan). And as a native New Yorker, I’m naturally drawn to the skyline of Manhattan. This was the starting point for this series of drawings. I’m merely taking some liberties with it and with historically diverse forms of architecture.
Usually I start with a building that gets my attention, and I take it from there. With the sort of drawings that I do, it’s almost impossible to correct a mistake or reverse a wrong direction, so a bit of time and brooding goes into it. If I were a photographer it would be called a photo-montage. Each original drawing is done with micro-pens of various diameters and points, on archival drawing paper.
Keith Jarrett is a musician who can improvise on music, from folk songs to Shostakovich. That’s what I do but with objects rather than sound. Each of my drawings is arrived at in the same way that a musician might improvise on a given song or melody.
- Robert Morris