Sara Berman

Best Foot Forward

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Year 2021
Medium Pen on paper
Dimensions 29.7 x 21 cm
Nominated by Sigrid Kirk
Top pick Edward Lee, collector

About the work

Scratchy, scratchy with that sharp little nib. Hard, stucco marks in anxious bursts and calmer lulls.

Time, speed, pressure and texture as central considerations in the act of drawing in the moment.

Movement and the containment of space. The body as a vessel for spatial expression and clothing as the liminal space to contextualize the body.

It is uncertain what is held and what is holding, but there is certainty in the mark making.

About the artist:

Born 1975 UK, Sara Berman lives and works in London. Graduated from BA Fashion Design, Central Saint Martins School of Art and Design (1999); and MFA Painting, Slade (2016).

Berman’s practice is constantly evolving. Painting sits at its centre and is supported and informed by constant drawing and weaving. She is always coming back to the mark, the line and materiality. Whether it is the pen with its direct tension and accuracy, or the thread with its functionality and purpose, or paint with its rich malleability – it seems she is always coming back to the line itself and its endless possibilities for description and expression. Berman oftens feels that she uses her weavings as meditations on painting – helping her understand decision-making, however drawing serves a different purpose. Drawing can be functional and instructive, but it also takes her to a place where the mind wonders in perfect harmony with the hand.

Selected solo and two person exhibitions include Scene Unscene, Gallery 46, London (2020); Frieze: Matter Out Of Place, 93 Baker St., London (2018); Between Community and commerce, Site specific installation, ZAZ10TS Time Square, New York (2018); Double Ententre, Anat Ebgi, Los Angeles (2018); Solitaire, Sapar Contemporary, New York (2018); and Big Cactus Little Cactus, Galerie Huit, Hong Kong (2017). Selected group exhibitions include Cure3 exhibition, Bonhams, London (2020); Supastore, NIDA Art Colony, Lithuania (2020); We Could Apply Our Lipstick, C&C Gallery, London (2020); Isolated Observations, Candida Stevens Gallery, Chichester (2020); Exeter Contemporary Open, Exeter Phoenix (2019); Hospital Rooms Fundraising Auction, Hauser and Wirth, London (2019); Dark Wood, Transition Gallery, London (2017); Royal Academy Summer Exhibition, Royal Academy, London (2017); Young Gods, Charlie Smith Gallery, London (2017); topophobophilia, Gallery 46, London (2016); Imagine, London Newcastle Project Space, London (2015); and BP portrait prize, National Portrait Gallery, London (2015).

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