Rachel Whiteread, Study for 'Floor'


British Museum

British Museum
London, United Kingdom

This drawing is based on the close observation of a parquet floor in the flat in Berlin where Whiteread lived for a year from 1992 to 1993. She produced many exploratory drawings in order to examine this herringbone arrangement of interlocking shapes. Most were on graph paper and in many she employed correction fluid as a drawing material in its own right. Here she uses it to cover up the ghost of walls and a doorway, isolating the floor from its context and imbuing it with a monumental, self-supporting volume. In this way it is not strictly a study for sculpture, but a parallel work examining the same impulses that encouraged her to cast domestic spaces in concrete, plaster and rubber to explore their properties. The disjunction between the regular grid of the graph paper and the characterful lines of the drawing highlights its highly subjective nature in opposition to the reproductive fidelity of her casts.


  • Title: Rachel Whiteread, Study for 'Floor'
  • Date Created: 1993
  • Physical Dimensions: 720 x 500 mm
  • Medium: Red ink and correction fluid on graph paper
  • Copyright: Courtesy Rachel Whiteread © The Trustees of the British Museum
  • British Museum link: Collection online

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