Drawing now is stronger than ever!

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David Nash, Hawthorn-May 2023, pigment on paper at Galerie Lelong & Cie

Drawing now, the contemporary drawing art fair which takes place every year at the same time as Salon du Dessin can be very varied in quality. This year, I particularly liked the very strong Templon stand with Abdelkader Benchamma, Chiharu Shiota, Daniel Dezeuze, Prune Nourry and François Rouan. All these painters, who regularly exhibit at the Paris gallery, showed extraordinary drawings which are more affordable. My other “coup de coeur” went for Lelong & Cie where David Nash had three amazing “Hawthorn”, pigments on paper, in greens. At 7 000€ one can start dreaming… Bienvenu Steinberg & J from New York,  showed paintings on paper by Peter Kim and Papillon had everyone stare at Raphaëlle Peria, “L’Equilibre de l’absence”, a “grattage” (scraping) on photography.

Petre Kim, Untitled 2024, at Bienvenu Steinberg & J

At Nathalie Obadia, the Belgian artist, Sophie Kuijken, had intriguing drawings on plaster plaques with chalk, which are just as worrying as her paintings.

Sophie Kuijken, 2019, pencil and metal pen on plaster plaque at Nathalie Obadia

Downstairs where the emerging galleries exhibit, a series of still life, pencil on paper, by Izumi Akiyama are totally enchanting at Kobayashi Gallery from Tokyo which was in the “Insight” part of the fair.

Izumi Akiyama, Still Life IX, pencil on paper, 2022, 4 000€.

At Antoine Dupin a gallery recently started in Cancale, Olivier Masmonteil exhibited the result of a month’s residence last summer. They are large charcoals on paper and sell for  3 500€. The beautiful light from Brittany shines over them. Sylvain Le Corre, an artist from Lorient, exhibited watercolors and graphite on paper representing dead vines and branches with great dexterity. Hélène Jayet, born in Mali who works in Montepllier, was shown at the gallery from the opening days: her new 2024 sceneries from Madagascar in acrylic and pastel sell for 2 300€. Her particular style with dots creates great poetry in each drawing.

Hélène Jayet, Madagascar, 2024 at Antoine Dupin

What I particularly liked in this gallery was the perfect harmony between the three artists, which gave to the booth a definite elegance, the same as in the Cancale Gallery.

Olivier Masmonteil, Cancale, 2023, at Antine Dupin

The 2024 laureate of the Drawing Now prize of 15 000€ was attributed last night to Tatiana Wolska, a Polish artist who lives in Brussels. She is represented by Irène Laub gallery in Brussels.

Tatiana Wolska, Untitled 2024, ©photo Say Who / Ayka Lux

Drawing now is a wonderful salon because you can find treasures for under 5 000€ and the sunny premises under the glass roof of Carreau du Temple made it particularly enjoyable this year. You can find these drawings in the respective galleries after the closing of the show on Sunday 24.

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