Dana Draper has been strongly influenced by his family who were involved in the arts. Harry Guggenheim, director of the Solomon Guggenheim Museum for 20 years, encouraged Draper to appreciate the arts by his volunteering in the museum library and in the art restoration conservatory.
Peggy Guggenheim opened her doors to her 20th century art filled home in Venice, Italy to the young Draper. With this exposure, Draper later entered the Art Student League and obtained a masters in fine arts from NYU.
Draper’s grandmother, Dorothy Draper, internationally recognized interior designer, who decorated the San Francisco Fairmont and Mark Hopkins Hotels, played a dominate roll in young Draper’s education. She was “The Designer” of the fifties and she taught him a keen sense of color and scale.
Currently: Again, Draper is working with copper, he has made the full circle from his early days in Chile. Draper employs a unique form of copper painting. He applies water based acids, and oxides directly on copper. Acids such as rice vinegar, lemon juice, and rock salt as well as special recipes are used to obtain exciting color patina interactions on the copper. Large sheets of copper that Draper has artfully crafted are transformed into unique art doors, interior dividers, wall panels, and site commissioned projects.
Draper is primarily a figurative artist focusing on the qualities of motion and light. Why nudes? “The undraped figures are devoid of politics, pretensions, and material possessions. Therefore, expression, feeling, motion, color, and relationship come into play as the primary visual and emotional factors.”