Kennesaw State Zuckerman Museum of Art to Present Artwork of Leonardo Drew

image of Leonardo Drew's work
Leonardo Drew (American (b. 1961))  Number 65P, 2017  Pigmented and cast handmade paper with hand-applied pigment  12 x 12 1/2 x 4 1/8 in.  Edition 10 of 10  © Leonardo Drew.  Photo courtesy of Pace Prints.

Sculptures, prints, and works in handmade paper highlight exhibition on chaos, life, and death

KENNESAW, Ga. (Feb 8, 2022) — Kennesaw State University’s Bernard A. Zuckerman Museum of Art (ZMA), a unit of the School of Art and Design, is pleased to present the exhibition Leonardo Drew: Cycles, From the Collections of Jordan D. Schnitzer and His Family Foundation from Feb. 20 to May 7. The public is invited to the free closing reception at the ZMA on Friday, May 6, from 7:30 to 9:00 p.m. 

jordan schnitzer logoChallenge and Innovate
The exhibition, curated by Loretta Yarlow, Director of the University Museum of Contemporary Art at University of Massachusetts Amherst, features many of Drew’s sculptures as well as numerous prints and works created in handmade paper. Jordan Schnitzer, whose generous support made the exhibition possible, says of the artist’s practice, “I often speak of how difficult it is to be an artist. And the struggles to challenge, risk, transform and innovate are certainly at the heart of Leonardo Drew’s visual language. His work makes tangible a refuge that allows for self-reflection and perhaps space in which to contemplate the constructs of beauty.”

Test the Medium
Drew’s prints, at once powerfully large yet fragile, test the versatility of the medium, transforming cotton paper pulp and pigment into what suggests densely populated cities, a forest, or an urban wasteland. Many of the prints resemble aerial maps of geographical landscapes, while others are reminders of distant galaxies in the night sky. 

Push the Boundaries
Evocative of fire, soil, sky, and water, there are strong perceptions in both microcosmic and macrocosmic scale. Organic forms within the artist’s compositions undulate with various textures and luminosities, pushing the boundaries of materiality. Much like his sculptural installations in wood, Drew starts with a raw material, transforming and reconstructing its essence until it resembles debris. 

Combine Elements
Through this process, the artist articulates diverse histories of chaos, and cycles of birth and death. Birth, life, death, and regeneration are consistent themes and associations depicted by his choice of materials. Using a variety of manufactured materials (wood, cardboard, paint, paper, plastic, rope, and string) combined with natural materials such as branches or tree trunks, Drew subjects the combined elements to processes of oxidation, burning, and weathering. These labor-intense manipulations mimic natural processes, transforming these objects into sculptures that address both formal and social concerns, as well as the cyclical nature of existence. 

Meet Leonardo Drew 
Born in 1961 in Tallahassee, Fla., Drew grew up in Bridgeport, Conn., where his talent and passion for art were recognized at an early age; he first exhibited his work at the age of 13. He attended the Parsons School of Design and received his BFA from the Cooper Union for the Advancement of Science and Art in 1985. Recent solo museum exhibitions include shows at de Young Museum, San Francisco (2017); SCAD Museum of Art at the Savannah College of Art and Design (2013); Beeler Gallery at the Columbus College of Art & Design (2013); Palazzo Delle Papesse, Centro Arte Contemporanea, Siena (2006); Royal Hibernian Academy, Dublin (2001); and Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington DC (2000). Drew’s mid-career survey, Existed, premiered at the Blaffer Gallery at the University of Houston in 2009. The exhibition went on to the Weatherspoon Art Museum in Greensboro, NC, and the de Cordova Museum and Sculpture Park in Lincoln, MA. 
 
Explore the Collections
Drew’s work is included in numerous public and private collections. Public collections include the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington, D.C.; Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Bentonville, Ark., and Tate, London. He has collaborated with the Merce Cunningham Dance Company and has participated in artist residencies at ArtPace, San Antonio, Texas, and The Studio Museum in Harlem, among others. In 2011, he was awarded the prestigious Joyce Alexander Wein Artist Prize by The Studio Museum in Harlem. Madison Square Park Conservancy in New York City has commissioned the artist to create a monumental new public art project for the Park, titled “City in the Grass.” Read more about Leonardo Drew

Make Art Accessible: The Jordan Schnitzer Family Foundation 
At age 14, Jordan D. Schnitzer bought his first work of art from his mother’s Portland, Oregon contemporary art gallery, evolving into a lifelong avocation as collector. He began collecting contemporary prints and multiples in earnest in 1988. Today, the collection exceeds 19,000 works and includes many of today’s most important contemporary artists; it remains of the country’s largest private print collections. He generously lends work from his collection to qualified institutions. The Foundation has organized over 110 exhibitions and has exhibited art at over 160 museums. Their generous support of Kennesaw State University will enable the ZMA to bring a series of workshops and educational opportunities for select public schools, and to host Drew at a closing reception on May 6. 

Schnitzer is President of Harsch Investment Properties, a privately owned real estate investment company based in Portland, owning, and managing office, multi-tenant industrial, multi-family and retail properties in six western states. For more information about the Jordan Schnitzer Family Foundation, please visit jordanschnitzer.org.

See the Exhibition, Meet the Artist
Leonardo Drew: Cycles, From the Collections of Jordan D. Schnitzer and His Family Foundation will be on exhibition at the ZMA from Feb. 20 to May 7. The public is invited to the closing reception at the ZMA on Friday, May 6 from 7:30 to 9 p.m.; free with a simple reservation

--Kathie Beckett

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