Abstract Drawing

WAG 6589


Lawrence Atkinson was one of the first British painters to work in a purely abstract mode. He joined Wyndham Lewis and the Vorticists in 1914 and exhibited with them in 1915. Vorticism expressed the fragmented nature of modern experience through restless and insistent diagonal lines, zig-zag patterns and machine forms. This drawing reflects Atkinson's interest in Vorticism. Compare this drawing to another by Atkinson, 'Study of a figure in relation to its environment' featured in an article by Richard Warren. They are quite similar in the overall form of the image depicted, and WAG 6589 may be construed to be an abstract realisation of a human figure. Note, in particular, the grid-like shape on the lower left and a quarter-circle in the top centre that resemble a hand and an eye respectively.