Sinks graphite on paper 86.5×59.5
Following the lead of Mr. Diebenkorn I decided to make this large drawing. The dimensions of Diebenkorn paintings were often based on the extent of his reach. And I thought working within the limits of my body would be an interesting experiment. Although the width of this drawing was dictated by the manufacturer, the width in general is not usually limited by one’s body but by the length of the wall on which it hangs. Therefore, I didn’t worry too much about the width, but the height is at my vertical limit which presented new challenges for me.
A favorite painting of mine is Diebenkorn’s Corner of Studio Sink, and I thought of it more than once while making this drawing. From the title you can guess that it’s pretty mundane subject matter, just a sink, a shelf, some pipes, a door, a floor, and a mirror. But what he’s able to do spatially in that painting is pretty incredible. Just about every object in the painting is at once flat and 3-dimensional. When you don’t look at certain objects in the painting directly your brain tells you they have depth. But once you focus your vision on any single object, it flattens out, becoming simply a shape of color. Additionally, Corner of Studio Sink has that signature, rhythmic horizontality and verticality that gives his work such a solid internal structure, allowing the viewer’s eye to travel in rectilinear thrusts. The spacing of objects is also a crucial element in Diebenkorn’s work. Spaces in between objects (and the space between objects and the edge of the canvas) create a subtle tension and charge to his otherwise humdrum scenes. So with this in mind I decided to see what I could do with the two sinks in the drawing room. I think there’s also a tip of the hat to Jim Dine in there, too. The tools he draws sometimes are “ghosted” in a similar way to how I drew the closest faucet. So a big thanks to both of these gentlemen for the inspiration and guidance on this one!