Shaheen Modern & Contemporary Art

Charles Kanwischer: Recent Drawings

Charles Kanwischer: Recent Drawings

untitled (house) by charles kanwischer

Charles Kanwischer

Untitled (House), 2009–2010

untitled (implement) by charles kanwischer

Charles Kanwischer

Untitled (Implement), 2010

Friday, June 18, 2010Friday, July 30, 2010


Cleveland, OH USA

SHAHEEN modern and contemporary art is delighted to announce an exhibition of recent drawings by Charles Kanwischer. The exhibition will be Kanwischer’s first at SHAHEEN. There will be an opening reception for the artist on Friday, June 18th from 7-9 p.m.

The modestly scaled, labor-intensive drawings that comprise Charles Kanwischer’s first exhibition at SHAHEEN are based on photographic source images of (what he terms) northwest Ohio’s “exurban” landscape, a heretofore sparsely populated vista in which flat expanses of farmland are being transformed into residential and commercial real estate at a rapid pace. The imagery depicted in the artist’s work derives from his own photographs of the landscape in-and-around construction sites, and images culled from real estate advertisements and listings. Although photographic in their immediate visual appearance, Kanwischer’s meticulously executed graphite drawings are driven by his obsessive immersion in and commitment to the methodical processes and physical materials of his practice. Images emerge from layer upon layer of barely-discernable, consistently applied marks made with a graphite pencil on gessoed paper that has been mounted to wood panel. The artist’s time consuming, labor-intensive working process and the accretion of physical material that it produces imbues the surfaces of his drawings with a dense, nearly slab-like quality, and creates crowded-out images that project into the viewer’s space at the same time that they recede into illusionistic depth. Kawischer’s visual subjects – sections of support pylons, drain pipes, and pieces of construction equipment standing like ruins in the landscape; roads and canals under construction; and facades and interiors of newly constructed or recently vacated homes – take on a monumental presence, reminding us not only of the rapidly changing contemporary landscape, but also of the slow, cyclical material and physical processes that have continuously erased, renewed and transformed the landscape over the course of history, and which underscore the artist’s approach to the act of drawing.

Born in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, Charles Kanwischer received a B.F.A. in Printmaking from the University of Iowa and an M.F.A. in Painting/Printmaking from Yale University School of Art. His work is included numerous museum collections, including the Boston Museum of Fine Arts, the Yale University Art Gallery, the Smith College Museum of Art, and the Akron Museum of Art. Currently, Kanwischer is Associate Professor of Art at Bowling Green State University.

SHAHEEN is open Tuesday through Friday 11 a.m. – 4 p.m., and by appointment.