CYNTHIA-REEVES presents Regeneration, on view from December 2 – January 27, featuring sculptural and wall-based works by Jessica Drenk. The artist will be at the gallery December 2 – 7 to create a site-specific installation to
complete the exhibition. The reception, which is open to the public, will be held on December 2 from 5 – 7 pm. All are welcome.
With her abiding interest in natural science, Drenk transforms commercial products, such as books, PVC pipe, and pencils, into organic forms that belie their material origins. In her book sculptures, Drenk cuts and carves old volumes and fashions them into wall based structures that speak of geologic layers, fossils, or oceanic creatures. The polished wax patina gives the work an aged, organic surface. This play between form and material is an ongoing theme in her work. The artist writes: “On a long enough timescale, there is no difference between manmade and nature; in the life cycle of objects, everything eventually returns to the earth.”
Drenk’s thought process has involved diverse materials, all put into service of the patterns and geometries of the
natural world. Pencils become mollusk-like forms or stalactites, Q-Tips are transformed into bleached coral reefs or
snow-laden tree branches; pages of old books become feathers or shards which, in their aggregate, becomes an ancient map.
The artist writes: “Nature and science are my primary inspirations: there are thousands of patterns and textures I
find fascinating…. plants, rocks, shells, landscapes, lichens, microscopic images, cellular patterns and crystalline
formations. Everything in the world is formed from basic parts and yet is full of complex textures and shapes of
unending variety. The ideas for my work occur at the intersection between the natural shapes I’m drawn to and the
materials I use. I tend to forget what they are and see them instead as something malleable with the potential to
become a fascinating new shape. I let the qualities of each material influence my process, often taking me in new and
unexpected directions. In all of my work, I am constantly striving to find a balance between complexity and simplicity, to create forms that are both additive and subtractive, and seeking a place in between pattern and chaos.”
An American artist raised in Montana, Drenk has been the recipient of several awards, including an Artist Project Grant from the Arizona Commission on the Arts, and the International Sculpture Center’s Outstanding Student Achievement in Contemporary Sculpture Award. Her work can be found internationally in private collections, as well as corporate and university collections within the US. Her work has been pictured in Sculpture and Interior Design magazines and has recently become a part of the Fidelity art collection and the Yale University collection. Her home and studio are currently in Florida.