|Since 1998, the Studio of Neue Galerie Graz has focused particularly on the medium of drawing. The intention is to present this focus as a small segment of a diverse and complex development in art by younger Austrians.
What we have in mind is the kind of drawing related to comics or trivial illustration, hence mainly focusing on existing visual stimuli. Despite its simplicity and long tradition, drawing is certainly not obsolete. It has remained interesting as a spontaneous, highly subjective medium.
The younger generation especially, having grown up with comics and TV, make this sphere of influence constantly visible in their artistic work. Almost all artists of this generation have in some way occupied themselves with comics, as readers, collectors, etc.
In art history, not only pop art (we all know about Andy Warhol's enthusiasm for Walt Disney) retained this realm as an important one. Artists from Haring to Pettibon or from Kippenberger to Sue Williams prompt us to recognise both a constant occupation with 'picture stories' and development in this area. Also the fact that representatives of a sub-cultural level (Tom of Finland, Eric Stanton etc.) succeeded and still succeed in exhibiting in galleries and museums, indicates that here is a most exciting interface between triviality and art.
Austria too, with artists from Kubin to Brus or Steiger, has a long tradition of narrative approaches in drawing.
So drawing has not been rendered redundant by electronic media, instead naturally making use of those structures too. Spontaneity, rapid sequences of images and the delivery of words and images in large quantities are phenomena that we also recognise as characteristic of electronic media.