Leonardo Drew is known for creating contemplative abstract sculptural works that play upon a tension between order and chaos. At once monumental and intimate in scale, his work recalls post-Minimalist sculpture that alludes to America’s industrial past. Drew transforms accumulations of raw materials such as wood, scrap metal, and cotton to articulate various overlapping themes with emotional gravitas: from the cyclical nature of life and decay to the erosion of time. His surfaces often approach a language of their own, embodying the labored process of writing oneself into history.
Drew’s works have been shown internationally and are included in numerous public collections including the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York; The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; The Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Washington DC; and Tate, London.
Drew was commissioned for a new outdoor project for Madison Square Park in summer 2019, marking the Madison Square Park Conservancy’s 38th public commission and the artist’s first major public art project. Recent solo museum exhibitions include shows at the Mississippi Museum of Art, Jackson (2020); North Carolina Museum of Art, Raleigh (2020); de Young Museum, Fine Arts Museum of San Francisco, California (2017); Palazzo Delle Papesse, Centro Arte Contemporanea, Siena, Italy (2006); and the 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, and traveled to the Weatherspoon Art Museum in Greensboro, North Carolina, and the DeCordova Sculpture Park and Museum in Lincoln, Massachusetts.
Drew was born in 1961 in Tallahassee, Florida, and he grew up in Bridgeport, Connecticut. He currently lives and works in Brooklyn, New York.