Brooke is a multi-disciplinary artist from Sydney whose practice explores the performative aspect of drawing. Leigh understands drawing through Catherine de Zegher’s definition that ‘drawing, through its qualities of fluidity and immediacy, is a process that is always in stages of becoming.’ Over the past seven years, Leigh’s work has evolved from gestural charcoal drawings influenced by interests in surrealism, abstraction and the unconscious to encompassing live performance, video, audio, photography, textile, object and installation. Her work investigates how the performative act can become a cathartic experience for internalised distress and suffering. In this sense, catharsis becomes the catalyst for understanding and acceptance. Supported by the Royston George Booker Scholarship for overseas research, Leigh was a Master of Fine Arts student and visiting scholar at LUCA School of Arts in Ghent, Belgium for twelve months.
In 2016, Leigh presented her first live performances (‘BEGIN’ and ‘Fracturing Silence’ at Croxhapox, Ghent), drawing collaborations (‘Chalk Dialogue’ and ‘mE/Us’ at Draw to Perform Symposium, Crows Nest Gallery, London), participated in International Performance Art Venice 2016 (The Praxis of Performance Art mentored by VestandPage), and featured as a ‘Šilainiai Project artist-in-residence in Kaunas, Lithuania. Informed by these experiences, she published as author ‘Moving Marks’, in PAJ: A Journal of Performance and Art, 39:1, Cambridge: MIT Press (2017); and ‘Time Trace: A drawn perception’ in Drawing: Research, Theory, Practice, 1:2, Bristol: Intellect Books (2016). In 2017, Leigh was awarded with a Master of Fine Arts by Sydney College of the Arts for her thesis and project, ‘Drawn-Out: trace and catharsis’. Live and documented iterations of Drawn-Out have been featured in exhibitions such as MCA ARTBAR curated by Julie Rrap (2017) Museum of Contemporary Art Australia; New Contemporaries (2018), SCA Galleries, Sydney College of the Arts; and Dobell Drawing Prize #21 (2019) at National Art School.
In December 2019, Leigh graduated from a two-year Dialectical Behaviour Therapy course. Foregrounded in mindfulness practice, the experience of this expanded her understanding and awareness of emotion, the human body and connection. Leigh has exhibited and performed in Australia, Belgium, Lithuania, Italy, Spain and the UK.
WHAT MESSAGE/FOOTPRINT DO YOU WANT TO LEAVE IN OUR WORLD?
By cultivating validation, awareness, reflection and understanding, I seek to challenge social behavioural responses of judgement, discomfort and intolerance.
UPCOMING JULY WORKSHOPS: TUESDAY 14 JULY @ THE FIELD ROSE BAY
UNFOLDING NATURE – EXPERIMENTAL DRAWING
- Connect with your inner self through a visualisation at the beginning of the day.
- This workshop is an introduction to expressive and experimental drawing.
- Students will learn to observe and draw by using their senses – sight, touch and sound.
- Grounded in mindfulness, each mark making exercise teaches the value of ‘in-the-moment’ experience rather than an outcome-based approach.
- Inspired by movement, sounds, texture and colours of nature, students will discover how drawing and music can be used to express, connect and relate with nature.
- Students will be challenged to let go of judgement and control in order to embrace curiosity and play.
- Learn: blind contour drawing, frottage technique, collage, concertina book making.
- Create your own hand-made artist book which showcases your drawing experiments from the day.
This workshop is an introduction to expressive and experimental drawing. Students will learn to observe and draw by using their senses – sight, touch and hearing.
Frottage technique, different modalities to approach to drawing practice and mark making