Lines of Thought Drawing from Michelangelo to now

Isabel Seligman, Bridget Riley, Hugo Champan

A show touring US museums examines the process and practice of drawing, showcasing over 500 years of work from Michelangelo to the present day.

Lines of Thought uncovers the process and practice of drawing, illustrated by a selection of work created over 500 years. From Dürer to Degas, Michelangelo to Matisse, Rembrandt to Riley, this publication studies the types of thinking that produced their drawings—brainstorming, inquiry, experiment, association, development and decision—giving us fresh insight into the creative impulse of some of the world’s greatest artists.

The accompanying exhibition will tour the United States in 2017 and 2018, inspiring and encouraging the practice of drawing. The exhibition and the book feature highlights of the British Museum’s outstanding Prints and Drawings Collection.


Isabel Seligman


Isabel Seligman is the Bridget Riley Art Foundation Exhibition Curator at the British Museum. Previous publications include Lines of thought: Drawing from Michelangelo to now and “Minimalism and conceptualism from the 1970s” in The American Dream: pop to the present, both published by Thames & Hudson in collaboration with the British Museum.

Bridget Riley

Foreword By

Bridget Riley is one of the most significant abstract painters working today and a master of the Op- Art style, which came to prominence in the 1960s. Her work is represented in the collections of The Art Institute of Chicago, Dia Art Foundation, NY; Los Angeles County Museum of Art; The Metropolitan Museum of Art, NY; The Museum of Modern Art, NY; and other institutions around the world.

Hugo Champan

Preface By

Hugo Chapman is Keeper of Prints and Drawings at the British Museum.