Jack Drummer: Stitch

18 May - 10 June 2017

BT&C Gallery is pleased to present STITCH, an exhibition of works by the late John E. (aka “Jack”) Drummer (1935-2013). STITCH opens Thursday, May 18th with a public reception 6-9 pm and will run through June 10th, 2017. Gallery hours are Fridays 12-7pm and select Saturdays 12-4pm (during exhibitions), or, anytime, by appointment (716-604-6183). This exhibition is the very last that will be installed in BT&C’s current space at 1250 Niagara St., which the gallery has occupied since June 2014. BT&C will open in a brand new gallery space at the same address in September 2017.

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STITCH will focus on Drummer’s mammoth black rubber canvases. This body of work represents the very last created by the artist before his death in 2013. Comprised of slick black rubber stretched across a frame, these pieces are characterized by stitched elements puncturing the surface and applied elements such as gravel and wax, which interrupt the expanse of matte darkness with a complex texture. The scale of these works envelops the viewer who is dwarfed by these stunning abstractions that take on the appearance of beautifully foreign landscapes. The works included in STITCH have never before been exhibited.

Douglas Dreishpoon, Chief Curator Emeritus, Albright-Knox Art Gallery, notes:
The rubber in these works, measured off from a large roll delivered to the studio, was a little thicker than a bicycle inner tube, pliable and receptive to acrylic and tar. These are Jack’s swan song, mysterious, intricate, and stunningly beautiful. Their lacerated surfaces, like a Fontana painting, give one pause. It’s hard not to project on to these visually conflicted works, to see them as acts of frustration and catharsis, their surfaces violated only to be lovingly repaired. The process of cutting and binding could be intensive and time consuming. The more Jack did it, the better he got at it. By the end of the run, extravagant patterns radiate like brazen trails across nocturnal skies. The appearance of blossoms against an expanse as black as death feels hopeful. Maybe Jack had reached a point in life’s circuitous journey where some peace of mind was possible. There’s no way to know. Only the work remain.

This is the second exhibition of Drummer’s work installed at BT&C. The first, titled Jack Drummer (April 29- June 11, 2016) was organized as a companion show to Jack Drummer: The Effects of Time, curated by Scott Propeack on view at the Burchfield Penney Art Center February 12 through June 12, 2016. BT&C represents the John E. Drummer Estate and you can contact us to make an appointment to see more of the Drummer Collection.

Artists in This Exhibition: