Morgan O’Hara

Artist's Website

LIVE TRANSMISSION: performative drawing

My work is culturally contextualized in the practice of drawing as a fundamental human endeavor and is continuous with the time-honored practice of drawing from life. It requires connection, direct observation and LIVE TRANSMISSION. I draw from and build on the historical continuum of the field. Through this work, I transcend the arbitrary "oppositions" between abstract and figurative art, between purely gestural expression and documentary intent, creating narrative work which results in a final product which is not figurative. The drawings themselves become a third actor or mediator in the experience. That which was beneath notice becomes concretized on the page as the paper receives the image. The method I have perfected requires close observation and actual drawing in real time with multiple razor-sharp pencils and both hands. I condense movement into accumulations of graphite line, combining the controlled refinement of classical drawing with the sensuality of spontaneous gesture. LIVE TRANSMISSIONS render visible normally invisible or fleeting movement patterns, through seismograph-like drawing. The theoretical base for the work is a visual transmission of the principle of vitality.

HANDWRITING THE CONSTITUTION: a performative social practice

In January of 2017 I began the performative social practice called HANDWRITING THE CONSTITUTION. People gather to handwrite documents created for the protection of human rights. In fall 2018 seventy-five sessions have been held across the United States as well as internationally in Asia and Europe.

Approximately 700 people have participated. For details and to participate, please check the website: www.handwritingtheconsitution.com

O'Hara's work is represented in the following international institutions (selected): National Gallery Washington, D.C.; The British Museum, London; Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Kupferstichkabinett Berlin; Stedelijk Museum, Amsterdam; Czech National Gallery, Prague; Moravska Galerie, Brno CZ; Museum of Modern Art, Olomouc, CZ; Hammer Museum, Los Angeles, CA.