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November 17, 2021

Brynn Higgins-Stirrup: Figure Drawn

Virginia Commonwealth University School of the Arts in Qatar

Brynn Higgins-Stirrup, Figure Drawn, 2021.

Brynn Higgins-Stirrup. Photo: Raviv Cohen.

Brynn Higgins-Stirrup, Head Group. The Study. Hanging Profile of Angel Hands, 2020. Mechanical pencil, watercolor, graphite, and ink on mylar, 40 x 25 inches.

Brynn Higgins-Stirrup, Head Group. The Study. Hanging Profile of Angel Hands (detail), 2020. Mechanical pencil, watercolor, graphite, and ink on mylar, 40 x 25 inches.

Brynn Higgins-Stirrup, 32. A Ghost. The Physical Weeping of Saint Visual Figure, 2020. Mechanical pencil, watercolor, graphite, and ink on mylar, 40 x 25 inches.

Brynn Higgins-Stirrup, X (788), 2021. Watercolor on inkjet print, 14 x 10 inches.

Brynn Higgins-Stirrup, X (584), 2021. Watercolor on inkjet print, 11 x 8.5 inches.

Brynn Higgins-Stirrup, Procession, 2021. Watercolor on printed paper with ceramic, 3 x 30 x 3 inches.

The VCUarts Qatar's Department of Painting + Printmaking is proud to present Figure Drawn—a publication launch and exhibition by artist and educator Brynn Higgins-Stirrup. Figure Drawn reflects on Higgins-Stirrup's artistic practice during her time as Artist-in-Residence at VCUarts Qatar in 2019–20 and expands to her current position as remote teaching faculty, working from her studio in Montreal, Canada.

The project presents Higgins-Stirrup’s creative practice and research, focusing on a series of drawings and sculptures that map the histories of academy and scientific drawing traditions, primarily sourced from Europe and the Middle East. The artist maps these histories through the careful dismantling of intricate diagrams and canonical drawings, working to untangle and find play within the complex ties between drawing and knowledge production.

This tracing acts as a method for discerning the evolution of ideas around sight, perception, and representation to elucidate the tenuous nature of knowledge itself. Through the creation of these visually ambiguous works, Higgins-Stirrup presents a subversive progress, as the intertwined histories of drawing and seeing are reimagined into less linear, more expansive narratives.

Essays: Dr. Aissa Deebi, Dr. Michael Whittle, Brynn Higgins-Stirrup, Michael Perrone. Project Coordinator: Carmina Celeridad-Robles. Design: Destarte Prieto. Printing: Printec, Doha, Qatar. The publication launch will include Professor Michael Perrone in conversation with Brynn Higgins-Stirrup.

The VCUarts Department of Painting + Printmaking is a vibrant community centered on both practice and research. Students build skills in painting, drawing, and printmaking but are also given opportunities to participate in an expanded field that includes socially engaged practices, creative coding, video, performance, and more. We offer both BFA and MFA degrees in addition to interdisciplinary models of education in partnership with other areas across the university. Alumni from this program have gone on to careers as artists, teachers, gallerists, curators, arts administrators, and master printers.

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