The sculpture “Birdman” by the internationally known abstract artists, The Zhou Brothers, is on display at the Purdue University Northwest campus in Westville as part of the PNW Odyssey Arts and Cultural Events Series.
Birdman, an abstract 14-foot sculpture painted in bright red, is clearly visible from U.S. Highway 421. The brothers see it as an expression of creative emotion, liberty and freedom – an enduring theme in their work for the past 40 years.
Liberty is precious to the brothers Da Huang and Shan Zuo Zhou. During their youth, the brothers survived the Mao Ze-Dong’s Cultural Revolution, during which their educator father was exiled. They, their educator mother and grandmother were re-located to a rural, mountain range where they were forced to adapt to farm life.
Able to resume their education, the Zhou brothers immersed themselves in university studies in the arts and, before they came to America, they became nationally recognized contemporary artists in China. Their 40-year collaboration has earned them international recognition and can be found in public and private collections around the globe.
Birdman joins a collection of Zhou Brothers paintings, small sculptures and terragraphs on display in the Westville Campus James B. Dworkin Student Services and Activities Complex and in several locations on the PNW Hammond Campus. Birdman was initially part of the Zhou B foundation garden in Chicago’s Bridgeport neighborhood.
“We are thrilled to respond to the Zhou Brothers’ wish to extend their statements through art to the other side of the lake,” said Judy Jacobi, assistant vice chancellor of University Art Collections & Special Programs. “It is an honor that they chose a spot on our highway gallery to be installed as a centerpiece and grow our partnership.”
To obtain further information or to schedule an appointment to tour the Purdue Northwest art collections, contact Jacobi at 219-785-5593 or Liz Bernel, PNW coordinator of Special Events at 219-785-5719. Tours are held year-round, rain or shine. Groups of children and teens accompanied by educators and parents are treated to a pizza lunch, compliments of PNW Chancellor Thomas Keon.
Purdue University Northwest
With recent approval by the Higher Learning Commission, Purdue University Calumet and Purdue University North Central have unified to become Purdue University Northwest (PNW), a comprehensive regional university within the Purdue University system. When it welcomes its first class of students this fall, PNW will become Indiana’s fifth largest public university, enrolling more than 15,000 students and offering 70+ degree programs.