Art is always present at Duke. Sometimes, it's easy to let it pass by you without taking the time to appreciate its beauty, intrigue, or even its existence. Take for example, the Louise Jones Brown Gallery. Most Duke students probably would not even know what I'm referring to, were I to mention this to them. Until last week, I myself wouldn't have known either.
The most recent exhibition in the Brown Gallery is the work of Lisa Creed. The exhibit displays her work in which she drew one piece of work every day since January 1, 2009. I have never stopped to look into the gallery before, but for some reason this work caught my attention. It was more the concept behind the piece than the actual work that intrigued me. What would your work look like if you had to draw something every day for over a year? What happens if you feel particularly uninspired one day, but you still have to crank out a drawing as not to let down on your commitment? What if you are overwhelmingly inspired one day but are confined to a small 8 x 11 sheet of paper?
It was interesting to see how Lisa Creed approached this situation. As I walked around the gallery, I noticed certain patterns. At times, for a few days at a time, the drawings would all be of the same object or image. Some drawings were the same drawing for days with just slight modifications. Other times, she would draw an object and then change the details of it the next day. Some days, the drawings were very bare and not very elaborate. However, other days, the drawings were very detailed and she clearly spent a lot of time on them. Some drawings were just rough sketches and I couldn't even make out the subject matter. However, other drawings included beautiful paints and detailed colors. You could see what ideas held her interest for days at a time as she continued with these drawings more than once. Other ideas only held her attention for a day and then she was onto something else.
None of the drawings in particular interested me so much that I remember them specifically. I can't remember more than few objects of her work, but what I do remember is the idea behind it. I remember the transformation of certain drawings and the contrast between days when she must have spent hours on one piece and days when she may have spent only a few minutes.
As I finish my senior year at Duke, I have made a personal vow to pay closer attention to these remarkable pieces of art throughout campus. I can't afford to not pay them their well-deserved attention because before long I won't have the privilege to enjoy them anymore.