Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco - de Young
San Francisco, CA
Leonardo Drew has employed the grid, while also working to subvert it as a principle, to organize his assemblages and installations since the early 1990s. Using off-the-shelf-materials and the occasional found object, Drew produces pieces whose metaphorical power is located within his labor-intensive manipulation of materials and the spatial dynamics of his compositions.
For the de Young, Drew has conceived of the expansive installation Number 197. Spanning three walls in the museum’s atrium, it comprises a multitude of Leonardo Drew created and arranged in response to the unique context of the de Young’s landmark architecture.
Credit: Exhibition overview from museum website.
Whether or not you go, Leonardo Drew portrays an American artist who creates large-scale sculptural installations incorporating both manipulated and found materials such as paper, wood, tree branches and roots, rust and mud. These materials are often stacked on top of one another, arranged in gradations of length or shape, endowing the sculpture itself with contrasting qualities of rigorous organization and organic chaos or proliferation. Drew has been making variations on this repertoire of humble materials since the 1970s, having had his first solo exhibition at the age of 13. With nearly 100 color reproductions of these works, this volume provides an overview of Drew's four-decade career, from the dramatic sculptures and installations of the 1980s and the enormous wall tableaux of the 1990s to the more fragile paper casts of the past decade.