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  • TraceyJayneThomas

Poetry in motion

In my pursuit of exploring mark making I discovered the subway drawings of William Anastasi. These drawings are made by him holding a pencil in each hand, held over a piece of paper supported by a board on his lap. For the duration of his journey, the pencils move in rhythm with the carriage. These drawings created a seismographic record of his journey. Anastasi was illustrating his journey, not in any conventional way, those marks describe how it physically felt. Pencil and paper, simple materials, but the richness and substance of information through the drawing method is quite poetic. He made his first subway drawings in 1967 and still does them today.


I was inspired. We were going back to see my mum at the weekend, so I went equipped with pencils and paper to document my own trip, back to my childhood home. It was a four hour drive, so I drew in sections.


Pencil marks on paper, selection of seismographic drawings

On returning to my studio, I laid out the drawings in order of sequence. Initially, I placed them side by side in a long line. It was a natural linear thought process, but something was lost in translation being presented that way. By grouping together as pictured above, they retained a relationship with each other, reading them this way effectively creates a story board.


What resulted was a seismographic illustration, presenting a narrative of my journey.



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