In her first solo exhibition, Drawing Breath showcases a series of selected life drawings by Hull artist Lauren Saunders. These were created at the Royal Drawing School in July 2019 as a direct result of the Emergence Bursary and exhibited with additional support from YVAN and Wykleand.
The Emergence Bursary – a collaboration between artist-network, Shape Arts and Disability Arts Online – sought to tackle isolation, low confidence and marginalisation of emerging disabled artists, actively pushing back against the lack of accessible opportunities in mainstream arts settings. This bursary could be spent in any way that each of the four receiving artists felt best supported the development of their own artistic practice. As an inaugural recipient, Lauren Saunders used her bursary to participate in an intense two-week ‘Drawing Marathon’ at the Royal Drawing School. During this experience, Lauren developed her technical skills by drawing directly from nude models, sitters and performers across the span of approximately 60 hours. The resulting drawings, of which there are over 150, have since fed into her more experimental and philosophy-inspired contemporary drawing practice, where she explores questions surrounding environmental ethics. She has most recently been investigating the intrinsic value of nature and the relationships between humanity and the natural world by drawing in the expanded field.