Why do we Draw?, excerpt from a text published on the book ‘A Smooth Guide to Travel Drawing’, Clive Dilnot
“Why do we draw?
Because we are lost, because we wish to be lost …
But why do we wish to be lost?
Because only when we are lost can we find ourselves again
The most important fact about doing drawing—so important that it is never spoken about in any manual of drawing I have ever seen—is that most of the time we sit down to do it.
Why do we do so?
Because in preparing to do a drawing we have to steady ourselves.
Against losing ourselves and the world—and against the shock of finding ourselves again.
This doesn’t make sense!
On the contrary
We draw to capture a moment.
We draw because something in that moment stopped us.
A drawing is a stoppage of time—it is an arrest.
This is terrifying in its possibilities—but also exhilarating.
This is why, in beginning a drawing, we steady ourselves (...)”
Clive Dilnot studied History and Philosophy of Art at Falmouth College, the Courtauld Institute, University of London and the University of Leeds. He taught at the University of Central Lancashire, Harvard University, the Hong Kong Polytechnic, and the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and presently at Parsons New School for Design, New School University, New York. He is one of the leading Design Historians and Theorist of our time with multiple influential texts and lectures. He has being invited to several major conferences as keynote speaker and has worked with various institutions for lectures and consulting. He is also a research consultant at UNIDCOM/IADE.