Andrea Sulzer
New Drawings
April 22 – May 29, 2010

Paper Weight
Poems by Caroline Sulzer and Images by Andrea Sulzer
A 52-page, soft-cover book in an edition of 100, including 6 poems and 15 plates, is also available through the gallery for $15.

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NEW YORK, NY – Coleman Burke Gallery is pleased to present the first New York solo exhibition of recent drawings, collages, and works on paper by artist Andrea Sulzer. The show will take place at 638 West 28th Street from April 22 through May 29, 2010.

The show will also include a limited edition, 52-page publication, “Paper Weight,” featuring six poems by Caroline Sulzer and fifteen images by Andrea Sulzer.

The quiet intensity of Andrea Sulzer’s drawings and other works on paper—comprised of imagery drawn from nature, memory, autobiography, and popular culture—make them among the most innovative, thought-provoking, and hypnotically beautiful drawings being made today. Combining a highly intuitive, improvisational approach with a meditative and intricate technique, Andrea Sulzer’s art centers on the act of drawing and a sustained investigation into its myriad possibilities and potentials.

Just as the practice of drawing itself can include everything from quick sketches to highly finished renderings (and much more besides), Sulzer’s work likewise embraces drawing in all of its forms and seemingly all of its states, from the tentative conjecture of the artist’s first mark on paper to a carefully planned and fully realized work of art.

For Sulzer, drawing is both subject and object, but also a process that serves as a metaphor for thought, intuition, memory, perception, and the complexity of consciousness itself; especially the fragmented and often chaotic consciousness of modern life. Like the narrator in Jorge Luis Borges’ short story, “The Aleph”—who is shown a vision of all space and time, seen in a single place and at a single moment—the seeming ambition in each of Sulzer’s drawings—even the most deceptively simple ones—is to embrace every corner of the universe, all at once.

As it was for Borges’ narrator, the effect of this vision is spell-binding, drawing us as viewers into a vertiginous world of forms that seem to be dissolving and reorganizing themselves before our eyes. Instrumental to this ambition, moreover, is an idea that lies at the heart of all great drawing, summarized by Picasso’s famous remark, “drawing is the art of omission”—a notion that Sulzer’s work employs to great advantage.

The untouched areas of paper in Andrea Sulzer’s work are neither empty nor unfinished—although they may beg that question—but allude to those persistent unknowns that are a hidden but equally tangible aspect of the known world. Even as science, philosophy and art continually push back the boundaries between what is known and what is not, the sheer presence of this unknowable universe—within us as much as without—is what fully characterizes the human condition and which Andrea Sulzer’s art both investigates and reveals with uncanny insight and vivid clarity.

Central to Sulzer’s encyclopedic approach is the use of printmaking as a drawing technique. Working without a press or any of the typical accoutrements of printmaking—including the production of multiples—she nevertheless employs inks applied with rollers and other methods of printing an image onto a surface as a metaphor for the imperfect transmission of both thought and language. Examining her work, it’s not always clear how the marks and colors came to be, whether directly from her hand or offset from another surface, adding to her work’s labyrinthian echoes.

Sulzer’s painstaking yet fluid renditions of seemingly familiar and knowable objects—a sea shell or a piece of candy, for instance—signal a conundrum about the limits of naming and knowing. Likewise, her smaller drawings and collages employ images so fragmentary—seemingly knowable one moment but elusive the next—that the ultimate subject of the drawing, like all of her work, becomes our own sense of abiding curiosity and beguiled wonderment.

About the Artist
Andrea Sulzer, after attending Smith College to study Fine Arts, received a BA in French from NYU and Masters degrees from Columbia (in Education), and the University of Maine (in Forest Biology). She received her MFA degree from Glasgow School of Art in 2004. Sulzer has worked as an instructor of English as a second language, a field ecologist, lab instructor in plant physiology, scientific illustrator and an instructor in Studio Art and Drawing.

Her work has been exhibited internationally at galleries as varied as The Drawing Center, Plane Space Gallery, and Nancy Margolis Gallery, each in New York City, the Atrium Gallery in London, Sowaka Gallery in Kyoto, Japan, and Tramway in Glasgow, Scotland. Additionally, Sulzer’s work has been the subject of solo exhibitions at ICON Contemporary Art in Brunswick, Maine, Merrimack College in North Andover, Massachusetts, and the Center for Maine Contemporary Art in Rockland, Maine.

Sulzer has been the recipient of individual artist’s fellowships from the Pollock-Krasner Foundation (2007), the Ludwig Vogelstein Foundation (2006), and the Maine Arts Commission (2005). She has been a resident at the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture, the Ucross Foundation, and the Vermont Studio School, and her work can be found in the collections of the Bowdoin Museum of Art, The Bates College Museum of Art, and numerous private collections.

About the Gallery
Founded in 2009, Coleman Burke Gallery New York is a contemporary gallery featuring both emerging and established artists working in a variety of mediums and approaches. Coleman Burke Gallery New York is affiliated with Coleman Burke Gallery Brunswick, a site-specific project space in the Fort Andross mill in Brunswick, Maine, and Coleman Burke Gallery Portland, a storefront window installation space at Port City Music Hall in Portland, Maine.


For more information contact:
638 West 28th Street, New York, NY 10001
Other Gallery Locations: > BRUNSWICK > PORTLAND