Featured in a solo show
at Helsinki’s Galerie Forsblom
this month, Drew has often said that his artistic career is shaped by his experience growing up in a public housing project in Bridgeport, Connecticut. His large, tactile works are visually arresting, particularly the wall-sized Number 22F
, a mixed-media installation crafted with wood, paint, and glue, and the spectacularly intricate Number 13F
, made with wood, paint, and a seemingly countless number of screws. They’re also rich with symbolism, especially with respect to his use of materials. Some of these symbols may be perceptible to the viewer—as Mary Proenza of Art in America
noted in a 2013 review, “his past use of such symbolically charged materials as cotton, rope, rags, and rust has been cited as referring to the antebellum South, Civil Rights struggles, and modern industrial America”—and others not. Drew’s latest works are made with wood and found objects, including tree branches, industrial scraps, paper, cotton, rust, roots, and mud.