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The Space Between Thoughts
2012
Video and audio installation


The following text was written by Laura Brown for the 2012 GAS + Espresso Garage Awards, courtesy of Griffith University Art Gallery.

Kylie Spear is a contemporary artist whose practice is concerned with expanded drawing. Spear's work seeks to broaden how the medium of drawing can be defined through a reconsideration of its traditional components, namely the point, line and plane. She approaches the drawn line from a philosophical foundation, viewing it as a conceptual tool of both connection and division. In the series, The Space Between Thoughts, which consists of the installation of four separate drawings, Spear considers ways in which expanded drawings can communicate gesture. Her works use time-based media, specifically video and audio, to preserve and translate linear bodily movement. This translation of gesture is communicated paradoxically through a visual absence or concealment of the body. Drawing 5 consists of documentation of a gestural action, in which Spear throws chalk against a dark backdrop. Over the duration of the video, residual points and marks build up on the surface of the screen only to be erased once the video restarts its loop.

These actions are echoed in Drawing 7, a sound work that uses binaural technology to recreate a spatial experience of the drawing. In this work, sounds of chalk colliding with the wall and floor, as well as subtle shuffling of feet and breathing act as evidence of the artist's gestural movements and are experienced as an invisible performance over the course of the soundtrack. The two smaller works, Drawing 2 and Drawing 6, negotiate gestural traces in a more direct sense, as we observe the dynamic maneuvering of a white sheet or the subtle movements of a hand.

Formally, Spear's works retain a sense of elegance and restraint, which is seen in her limitation of her drawings to only black and white. She presents each video on a portrait screen, and has positioned them in such a way as to encourage a spatial investigation of these expanded drawings. As the audience walks through the space, various dynamic connections between the drawings are discovered.