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Item Name: Drawing
Title: Mnemonic forms
Maker: Frank Nulf
Year: 1974
Country: Canadian
Materials: pencil on paper
Measurements: in frame: 71 cm x 92 cm; work: 57.2 cm x 76.2 cm
ID Number: PC2017.9

Extended Label Info: The title of this drawing refers to the practice of using patterns of letters or associations of ideas as a memory aid. For example, “Roy G. Biv” can help recall the order of the colours in the rainbow. However, the imagery in this drawing suggests an act of remembering that is less about a specific idea, and more like trying to recall a dark dream. Nulf’s composition is simple but atmospheric, the shapes are familiar but mysterious. When he began exploring drawing in the 1970s it was unusual to create drawings as finished artworks for exhibition. Nulf, like many in his generation, had been trained in the academic tradition in which drawing was a utilitarian skill used to create painting or sculpture. His softly rendered work explored a range of forms from amorphous to geometric and realistic objects. Frank Nulf (1931-2015) Frank Nulf was born in Lima, Ohio and grew up in Phoenix, Arizona. He earned a Bachelor of Science at Arizona State University (1958), and a Master of Arts from Michigan State University (1960). During his term as associate professor of art at the State University of New York (1960-69), he was awarded a Fulbright scholarship in painting and travelled to Spain in 1962. Nulf also continued his studies, earning his Ph.D. In Comparative Arts from Ohio University (1969). That fall Nulf moved to Regina to work at the University of Regina as Dean of Fine Arts. When his term ended in 1974, Nulf continued to teach at the U of R until 1988, when he retired to Sydenham, Ontario. His artwork has been exhibited in Canada and the United States and is held in private and public collections, including the Saskatchewan Arts Board and National Gallery of Canada.