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from the book...

by various artists
edited by Serge Onnen

Paper book with folded cardboard cover and elastic cord
140 pages, black and white offset, 8" x 9.5"
Edition of 2000
ISBN 978-0-9799188-0-3


Drawings on Writing is a collection of black and white drawings based on the concept of text and illegibility. Dutch/French artist Serge Onnen selected the works from historical figures to contemporary artists, as well as anonymous ephemera. This is the third volume of drawings compiled by Onnen following a similar format. The first appeared in Zingmagazine issue no.16 on the theme of the Face. The second was published by J&L on the theme of Geology.

Of all the words one uses in a day, the handwritten ones are the most rare. Written with a pen on a small piece of paper or carved with a knife in a tree. Physically made words. Most words are made with a machine such as a laptop or a phone -- words you've never really touched. One learns to make the words by hand as a child, but very soon after that, one starts using a machine. The handwriting years come more or less to an end with the first keyboard, and like drawing it becomes an ancient act. You draw it when you can't find a photo or camera, and you handwrite it when you can't find a keyboard. When it's unreadable to the other, it becomes some kind of drawing. Readability depends on codes and conventions -- just for one person or for billions, like Chinese. This book is a silent space where the signs and words have come to a rest. Where they don't have to act by what they mean. - Serge Onnen


Drawings/text by: Robert Walser, Jaap Blonk, Leon Ferrari, Dominic McGill, Sherlock Holmes, Trisha Brown, Carl Ferrero, Xu Bing, Christopher McNully, Andre Masson, Guy Richard Smit, Marcus Raetz, Vincent van Gogh, Voebe de Gruyter, Charles Vreuls, Ana Hatherly, Anneliese Coste, Daragh Reeves, Henri Jacobs, Benoit Plateus, Graham Gillmore, Olav Westphalen, Napoleon Bonaparte, CIA, Max Ernst, Trenton Doyle Hancock, Yani Christou, Jean Luc Parant, Richard Niessen, Gordon Terry, James Lee Byard, Tiago Estrada, Toadhouse, Sylvano Bussotti, Tanja Smit, Cornelius Cardew, Alexandre Estrela, Roland Topor, FBI, Altagor, Rene Daniels, Christian Dotremont, Henri Chopin, Lily van der Stokker , Roland Barthes, Gustave Flaubert, Victor Hugo, Elmer Brown, Shakers, Juli Gudehus, Kinke Kooi, Serge Onnen, Ascii-art... and more !



Drawings on Hands

Drawings on Geology