How was the idea of the conference Crossing the Line conceived?
IRENE BARBERIS - I have been working in a global context with Drawing for many years – over the last four, my conversations have been, amongst others, with Professor Stephen Farthing from the University of the Arts London. In 2009 I brought Stephen to Australia through the Metasenta, to exhibit at its Gallery – The DrawingSpace, Melbourne which was situated in RMIT University, while I exhibited performative and more sculptural drawings in the UK, at the University of the Arts London and the Bury Museum and Art Gallery. In April 2010 RMIT hosted an international Drawing Conference ‘Drawing Out’ at which Stephen was one of the Keynotes and I was involved through the Steering Committee. When in Dubai in January of this year for an exhibition at Tashkeel Bastakia, it occurred to me/us through a dialogue with Dr Marcelo Lima and Associate Professor Julia Townsend, that a conference on Drawing in the Middle East would be of enormous benefit to the extended community, and would be a pivot for dialogue on the specificities of ‘Drawing’ – its transdisciplinary nature, the porosity of its context, its marvelous span of materiality, and the multi layered nature of its linage and character. Drawing is a continuum of idea and thought, process and manifestation; it has the capacity to ‘capture’ and be a doorway to most everything and is to my mind all-inclusive. This conference will stimulate and hopefully galvanize Drawing as a presence in the Middle East.
read the complete interview here: PANOPTIKON