Loyola University Chicago’s Fine Arts Complex (1131 W. Sheridan Rd.) has opened its latest exhibit in the Ralph Arnold Gallery, titled “Unapologetic Drawing,” which highlights drawing as its own artistic medium. The exhibit is comprised of work from Chicago-based artists, such as Deb Sokolow, Rory Monaghan and Ryan Travis Christian, as well as Los Angeles artist Robyn O’Neil.
Inside the gallery, one can find many different styles of work ranging from the concrete to the abstract. Visitors are greeted by an impeccable sketch done by Geoffry Smalley of the late NFL player, Aaron Hernandez. A large replica of the iconic photograph in which he looks to the sky with outstretched arms depicts the height of his career as a tight end for the New England Patriots.
Small cartoon sketches of various characters from 1940s cartoons and Monaghan’s abstract cactus-like portraits line the adjacent wall. Directly behind is O’Neil’s “Ultralight Beam Terzetto,” depicting the artist’s interpretation of Judgement Day. Hung next to the Terzetto is Erin Washington’s piece illustrating the cover of a book titled, “Search for Meaning: the Introduction.”
On the back wall, one will find a series of comic strips created by Sokolow each telling a narrative through rooms in a home.
Sokolow described her display at the exhibition as “text-driven narrative drawings.”
“[Drawing] allows for a level of informality, mistakes and uncertainty. I also think of it as the medium most directly connected to or associated with both thinking and writing,” Sokolow said. “For me, [that] is what makes drawing fascinating but also incredibly important in terms of visualizing ideas and fleshing out a thought process.”
Sokolow encourages students to visit the gallery and personally enjoy the art.
“I’m not attempting to create a specific message for viewers,” Sokolow said, “but I love it if a viewer actually takes the time to read what I’ve written in a drawing.”
Her work offers a creative take on narrative storytelling, by incorporating photographs and illustrations to bring the piece to life.
Loyola students should consider stopping by the Ralph Arnold Fine Arts Gallery to celebrate the works of these talented artists. The exhibit opened Nov. 30 and will run through Jan. 26. It is free to enter for Loyola students. The building requires a Loyola ID to enter. Ralph Arnold Fine Arts Gallery is open to the Loyola community from 8 a.m.-10 p.m. daily, and to the public from noon-5 p.m. Friday through Saturday.