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Short Presentation of ideas for 'Fireworks Now' Symposium Aberystwyth University

Drawing  Conversation

Basic Premise:


person A instigates a drawing

this can be a simple gestural line or something figurative depending on the age of the child and intent of the 'drawing conversation' 

person B responds to the mark with an adaptation; an addition or intervention that extends the meaning of the drawing.

the cycle repeats  

Reflection of the drawings can now take place. Is there something here worth building upon in regard idea generation, a potential exhibition or in relation to a workshop theme? These ideas can form the progression of the drawing.


Drawing conversations isn't a new idea; it follows in the footsteps of a game of consequences or more historically the surrealists 'Exquisite Corpse'. It is a simple format, to use drawing or other visual imagery to converse sequentially with another to enable the potency and capacity of drawing as a cognitive tool.


What is fascinating, in both adult and children's examples, is that even in an 'abstract' or free associative form, the visual conversations can be seen to reflect the patterns of verbal conversations such as evidencing dominant or passive roles, a meeting of combative opposing values, a mimicking or falling in line with each others decisions/style/content, openings being offered, overlooked or avoided etc.


The difference 'drawing conversation' brings to verbal communication, is a freer exploration of the world, a new mapping of territories or perimeters otherwise fixed by circumstance or age related roles. In relation to the home, it can facilitate a vibrant enquiry of anything from a precursor to play, as part of mapping family walks, discussing the view from a window as seasons change, the birth of a sibling, exploring sibling rivalry or to test out story telling/writing skills – these are just some of the approaches already suggested.  


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