Druecke employs a variety of formats in his work: intervention, collaboration, photo series, and texts, which, in turn, cross-reference one another. The projects utilize ubiquitous social phenomena such as bronze plaques, bake sales, red carpets, or the boardroom. Druecke uses these familiar frames of reference to investigate relationships between autonomy, influence, and community. The work extends beyond the physical or psychological context of the art institution, and is located in the broader cultural arena.
Paul Druecke lives in Milwaukee Wisconsin. His work was included in the 2014 Whitney Biennial. A co-authored discussion of his work will be included in the forthcoming Blackwell Companion to Public Art and he's currently an invited resident at the Zentrum für Kunst und Urbanistik in Berlin, Germany.
Druecke's 1997 project, A Social Event Archive, foreshadowed the role of social media in blurring boundaries between the personal and public. Andrew Goldstein, writing on Artspace.com, says, "A Social Event Archive is viewed as having prefigured social sites like Instagram by inviting people to give him personal snapshots that he then displayed." In his essay, Party Platform (2000), David Robbins writes, "... Paul Druecke is fascinated by the collective mind. The platform he's invented employs both pictorial and structural means to present it."
Druecke received a Greater Milwaukee Foundation Mary L. Nohl Fellowship for Individual Artists in 2010. He was also a 2010 resident in the Spaces World Art Program, Cleveland, Ohio. He was a 2008 resident in the Berlin iteration of the Many Mini Residency series. Since 2007, he has received multiple awards from Mary L. Nohl Suitcase Fund, the most recent being in 2014. Druecke has published two books with Green Gallery Press, Life and Death on the Bluffs (2014), which premiered at the Whitney Biennial, and The Last Days of John Budgen Jr. (2010). Druecke has been an Instructor at the Milwaukee Institute of Art & Design since 2011.
In addition to recent work with public inscription, Druecke's projects have solicited strangers door to door, christened a park and courtyard, rolled out the red carpet, appropriated the role of benefactor, initiated a Board of Directors, and created two Memorial Reading Rooms.
Druecke has worked with the Whitney Museum of American Art, NYC; Marlborough Chelsea, NYC; Kölnischer Kunstverein, Cologne; Lynden Sculpture Garden, Milwaukee; The Suburban, Chicago; Outpost for Contemporary Art, Los Angeles; Many Mini Residency, Berlin; Green Gallery, Milwaukee; and the Contemporary Art Museum Houston among other venues. My work has been featured in Camera Austria and InterReview, and written about in Artforum, Art in America, Artnet.com, and Metropolis.com.
I am interested in stories told by landmarks that exist beyond what is inscribed in bronze. These stories include, who had (and has) the wherewithal to make their imprint public? And what limits are in place regarding the content of commemoration?