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Theme 2024 : Drawing worlds

Up to the 17th century, drawing was inherently considered a study, sketch or a preparatory work for an artwork, an architectural design or a machine. Drawings are fragile in nature, turning yellow on exposure to light, gathering dirt and crumpling easily – they were therefore considered fleeting, or lessor works. Drawings were not preserved and even less exhibited than paintings, for example. Yet drawing is the first form of human artistic expression. The animal drawings in the Palaeolithic caves of Lascaux dating back around 15,000 years bear witness.

In the 20th, and even more so in the 21st century, drawing became an art form in its own right. It is no longer exclusively a technique of visual representation on a flat surface.  It is developing alongside visual arts through history towards an independent art form. Artists seek to broaden drawing possibilities through different mediums (coloured pencils, biros, pastels, felt tips and charcoal among others), different techniques (writing, typography, sketching, collage, engraving, etching, photography, imprints and more) and on new material (card, plastic, wood, textile, concrete, photographic paper, tracing paper and others) for artistic, industrial and commercial aims.

Drawing is shifting away from the traditional fine arts field and broadening into graphic arts, such as architectural and machine designs, textile patterns, ceramics studies, fashion sketches and comic strips. Since the end of the 20th century, artists have been drawing with computers on tactile screens with stylus pens. Material lines make way for smooth lines as the new, digital art transpires. Today, drawing has naturally left the framework of the medium. It occupies space and animates it: see Jean Michel Alberola’s neon light drawing; Bernard Moninot’s spacial drawing with textile partitions; and Jonathan Lasker’s thick, pattern-forming pastes.


Both artists and public demonstrate growing enthusiasm for this artistic discipline, reminding us that drawing is an aspiration that allows us to express a narrative line, material physicality, fantastic landscapes, mysterious architecture, experimental graphics and imaginary beings.

Lille Art Up! 2024

From 8 to 11 February at Lille Grand Palais

Lille Art Up! in a few words

Lille Art Up! is a contemporary art fair created in 2008 by Lille Grand Palais. Every year, it welcomes about a hundred contemporary art galleries and 30,000 visitors during the four-days event.

As a must-see artistic event, Lille Art Up! is the first regional contemporary art fair with art galleries from Lille, Hauts-de-France, but also from France and abroad, all selected by an artistic committee.

A contemporary art gallery is an exhibition space specifically designed to showcase works of art and present them to the public. The art gallery selects the artists it wishes to exhibit and provides them not only with a space but also with special support to make their work known.

Like art galleries, the Lille art fair is also a privileged place for the works of contemporary artists.

The artwork exhibited is various : paintings, sculptures, photographs, installations, videos… Contemporary art is represented in all forms and styles.

To discover all the artists and their artwork presented during the fair, you can browse our pages dedicated to the galleries and artists and enjoy the experience of visiting an online art gallery.

Lille Art Up! is also an epicenter of the art market in the region. Thus, collectors benefit from a privileged moment during the opening of the fair to discover contemporary artists and their work.

As a true cultural event, the fair also welcomes partners such as museums in Lille and its area, art schools, art centers and other cultural structures, thus creating a real dynamic between the various players from the art world.

In parallel with the art galleries, Lille Art Up! also hosts contemporary art exhibitions around a different theme each year. Some of these exhibitions are presented by museums or cultural structures, others highlight new artists. The contemporary art fair of Lille is also revealing talents by hosting each year the Revelation by Lille Art Up! event which presents the works of young student artists from the Euroregion.

Photo à propos

The artistic committee

The artistic committee of Lille Art Up! studies each gallery's application on the basis of an iconographic file presenting the selection of works that the gallery owner wishes to exhibit during the fair.

Membre du comité artistique



Director of Lille Art Up! President of the committee

Membre du comité artistique



Lille Art Up! artistic director

Membre du comité artistique



President of the association Lille Art Galleries

Membre du comité artistique



Les Echos editor-in-chief

Membre du comité artistique



Off Course Brussels co-director

Membre du comité artistique



Videomaker, writer, videoart professor at the Tourcoing ESA and Valenciennes University

Membre du comité artistique



Art collector

Membre du comité artistique




Membre du comité artistique



Art collector

Save the date Lille Art Up! 2024

Art Night

La Nuit de l'Art is a captivating night where artists create live performances. Come and experience an evening where colors and sounds come to life live, on Thursday, February 8, 2024 from 6pm to 11pm.

Art Up! arrives in Grenoble

In 2024, the Art Up! brand will be exported to the Grenoble region by co-creating with ALPEXPO, Grenoble Art Up! See you at ALPEXPO from 4 to 7 April 2024.

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