Following a period in which he created pencil drawings on very large sheets of paper or on a multitude of small sheets covering a given architectural space, Karim Noureldin began using colour. In 2006, he began a series of drawings which he entitled Evo, for ‘evolution’. It included three types of vertical formats: this is a medium-sized example.
Using a performative approach, Noureldin develops geometric patterns on the paper without preliminary sketches. When the time comes to draw, there is no room left for thought: all the research he has put in is poured into a single, intuitive movement. He sets himself a working pace and lets the shapes emerge with no preconceived idea of what they will become. The drawing’s forward-looking role leads to precise, neat works with no trace of hesitancy, rather than rough sketches. The economy of means inherent in drawing is particularly suited to this kind of artistic process, as the history of the medium since the 1970s demonstrates. Noureldin’s drawings are not the result of a unique flight of inspiration, but of several working steps, after which he judges their quality and categorises them according to how well they have turned out.
In this work, all in the same palette, Noureldin has cut across the width of the sheet with slanting lines. The zones created by these lines are fleshed out with hatching in opposite directions in red, pale pink, and bright pink pencil. The dynamic play of irregular shapes is far more vibrant close up than a distant view suggests. The perception of the shapes and background is disturbed by the way the sheet of paper appears to be cut into facets, creating triangles left uncoloured. The coloured patterns and white patches seem to stand out in the foreground in turn.
Karim Noureldin and Christina Végh (ed.), Karim Noureldin, Nuremberg, Verlag für moderne Kunst, 2013: 137.
Stefan Gronert, Zeichnung Heute V. Katja Eckert, Karim Noureldin, Sandra Peters, exh. cat., Bonn, Kunstmuseum Bonn, 2007.
Madeleine Schuppli (ed.), Karim Noureldin, exh. cat. Thun, Kunstmuseum, 2000.