I recently watched this half-hour documentary on one of today's most amazing (and most under-appreciated) artists, Laurie Lipton. In a compelling interview, she talks about her drawings, background, and ideas. She also tells a story about a horrifying and pivotal moment in her life. Lipton was kidnapped as a child, and this experience led her to become an artist. The video also shows many close-ups of her astonishing graphite drawings, which I could look at for hours. Lipton's drawings almost always feature dark subject matter, and are made up of an obsessive amount of tiny, meticulous, crosshatched lines. I became fascinated with Lipton's drawings when I was in high school, and I never cease to be amazed by the way she draws.
When Laurie Lipton was a child, she was the victim of a horrific kidnapping. "Suddenly, reality shifted," she says. "Before then, I was fearless. My life turned into something else. Now, people were dangerous. Stuff was incomprehensible. This made me an artist." For Lipton, suffering became a kind of gift—one that, to this day, fuels her prolific body of artwork. Lipton's macabre black-and-white drawings expose some of the most unsettling themes in our culture, such as fear, politics, sex, murder, indifference, greed, and chaos. She brings to life the grotesque sides of human nature, the haunting imagery that lurks in our unconscious."