Project Description

Woods Davy

For the past twenty-five years, Woods Davy has worked with natural elements, usually incorporating various types of stone in fluid balancing acts that reflect the artist’s “Western Zen” sensibility. He might be thought of as among the first “green” Postmodern artists. In fact, he comes from a long tradition of post 60s artists, who either directly or just by their practical sensibility, engage Eastern or Zen notions of oneness with nature, organic systems of change as engines of art composition, and non-disruptive respect for natural material in unaltered states. These works manage this, as they illuminate the poetry of nature. As Holly Meyers observed in a previous exhibition, there is “something thrilling about a work that appears to defy its own natural properties,” while at the same time one can appreciate the work’s “meditative reverence.”

EDUCATION
1975 MFA, University of Illinois, Champaign-Urbana, IL
1972 BFA, Morehead Scholar University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, St. Albans School, Washington, DC

SELECTED SOLO EXHIBITIONS
2012 Craig Krull Gallery, Santa Monica, CA
2012 Bentley Gallery, Scottsdale, AZ
2011 Galerie Marie Laure de L’Ecotais, Paris, France
2011 Craig Krull Gallery,Santa Monica, CA
2010 Craig Krull Gallery,Santa Monica, CA
2010 Galerie Marie Laure de L’Ecotais, Paris, France
2009 Joel Cooner Gallery, Dallas, TX
2008 OK Harris Works of Art, New York, NY
2008 Craig Krull Gallery, Santa Monica, CA
2008 Gebert Contemporary, Santa Fe, NM
2007 Craig Krull Gallery, Santa Monica, CA
2006 Craig Krull Gallery, Santa Monica, CA
2006 Chiaroscuro Gallery, Santa Fe, NM
2005 Craig Krull Gallery, Santa Monica, CA
2005 Bentley Gallery, Phoenix, AZ
2004 Craig Krull Gallery, Santa Monica, CA
1004 Allene Lapides Gallery, Santa Fe, NM
2003 Craig Krull Gallery, Santa Monica, CA
2002 Skidmore Contemporary Art, Malibu, CA
2001 Imago Galleries, Palm Desert, CA
2000 Skidmore Contemporary Art, Malibu, CA
2000 Ochi Fine Art, Ketchum, ID
1998 Jan Abrams Fine Art, NY
1998 Gallery at 777, Los Angeles, CA
1996 Jan Abrams Fine Art, NY
1995 Kantor Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
1994 Thomas Babeor Gallery, La Jolla, CA
1993 Gallery DeRoche, San Francisco, CA
1992 Works Gallery, Costa Mesa, CA
1992 Franz Bader Gallery, Washington, DC
1991 Works Gallery, Costa Mesa, CA
1990 Works Gallery, Long Beach, CA
1989 Thomas Babeor Gallery, La Jolla, CA
1988 Valerie Miller Fine Art, Palm Springs, CA
1987 Tortue Gallery, Santa Monica, CA
1986 McIntosh/Drysdale Gallery, Washington, DC
1986 Desert Plaza, Palm Springs, CA
1985 Tortue Gallery, Santa Monica, CA
1985 McIntosh/Drysdale Gallery, Houston, TX
1985 Thomas Babeor Gallery, La Jolla, CA
1984 McIntosh/Drysdale Gallery, Houston, TX
1984 New Public Art, Otis Parsons, Los Angeles, CA
1983 Hunsaker/Schlesinger & Associates, Los Angeles, CA
1982 Los Angeles City Hall, Spring Street Court & Rotunda
1981 Neil G. Ovsey Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
1980 Security Pacific Bank, Los Angeles, CA
1980 William Sawyer Gallery, San Francisco, CA
1980 Long Beach City College, Long Beach, CA
1979 Union Station, Los Angeles, CA

SELECTED GROUP EXHIBITIONS
2011 Gail Severn Gallery, Ketchum, ID
2010 Stremmel Gallery, Reno, NV
2010 Art Affair Cannes ’10, Cannes, France
2010 Claes Gallery, Brussels, Belgium
2010 Galeries Ferrero, Nice, France
2009 Alain Naoum Gallery, Brussels, Belgium
2008 David Floria Gallery, Aspen, CO
2008 Imago Galleries, Palm Desert, CA
2008 Gail Severn Gallery, Ketchum, ID
2007 Stremmel Gallery, Reno, NV
2007 Gail Severn Gallery, Ketchum, ID
2006 Imago Galleries, Palm Desert, CA
2006 Bentley Gallery, Scottsdale, AZ
2005 Bentley Projects, Phoenix, AZ
2005 Allene Lapides Gallery, Santa Fe, NM
2004 Bentley Projects, Phoenix, AZ
2004 Bentley Gallery, Scottsdale, AZ
2004 Imago Galleries, Palm Desert, CA
2004 Allene Lapides Gallery, Santa Fe, NM
2004 Craig Krull Gallery, Santa Monica, CA
2003 Frederic R. Weisman Museum of Art, Malibu, CA
2003 Boise Art Museum, Boise, ID
2003 Allene Lapides Gallery, Santa Fe, NM
2003 Craig Krull Gallery, Santa Monica, CA
2003 Runyon Fine Art, Dallas, TX
2003 Skidmore Contemporary Art, Malibu, CA
2002 Imago Galleries, Palm Desert, CA
2002 Craig Krull Gallery, Santa Monica, CA
2002 Museum of Outdoor Sculpture, Denver, CO
2001 Imago Galleries, Palm Desert, CA
1999 Imago Galleries, Palm Desert, CA
1998 “Outdoor Sculpture Invitational,”Barat College, Evanston,IL
1998 Wood Street Gallery, Chicago, IL
1998 Skidmore Contemporary Art, Malibu, CA
1998 “Pier Walk ‘98,” Sculpture Invitational, Chicago, IL
1997 “Pier Walk ‘97,” Sculpture Invitational, Chicago, IL
1997 Jan Abrams Fine Art, New York, NY
1996 “Pier Walk ‘96,” Sculpture Invitational, Chicago, IL
1996 Koplin Gallery, Santa Monica, CA
1996 LACMA, Los Angeles, CA
1995 Jan Abrams Fine Art, New York, NY
1995 Joy Tash Gallery, Scottsdale, AZ
1994 MOCA, Los Angeles, CA
1994 Sculpture Space, Washington, DC
1994 Jan Abrams Fine Art, Los Angeles, CA
1993 Thomas Babeor Gallery, La Jolla, CA
1993 Palm Springs Desert Museum, Palm Springs, CA
1992 Marcia Simon Weisman Gallery, Cedars-Sinai Hospital,
Los Angeles, CA
1991 Fleck/Ellman Gallery, Aspen, CO
1991 Dennis Vaughn Gallery, Aspen, CO
1991 “Natural Forces,” LAX, Los Angeles, CA
1990 MOCA, Los Angeles, CA
1990 McIntosh/Drysdale Gallery, Washington, DC
1989 Works Gallery, Long Beach, CA
1989 “Art in the Parks,” Beverly Hills, CA
1988 “Art in Public Spaces,” National Traveling Exhibition
1988 “Art in Public Buildings,” California Arts Council,
1988 California State University, Fresno, CA
1987 “Los Angeles Public Art,” Fine Arts Building, CA
1987 Tortue Gallery, Santa Monica, CA
1986 McIntosh/Drysdale Gallery, Washington, DC
1986 Sybil Larney Gallery, Chicago
1985 “Monuments To,” University Art Museum,
1985 California State University, Long Beach, CA
1984 Otis Parsons Institute of the Arts, Los Angeles, CA
1984 Cirrus Art Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
1984 Roy Boyd Gallery, Chicago, IL and Los Angeles, CA
1984 Koplin Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
1983 “Urban Sculpture,” Security Pacific Bank, Los Angeles, CA
1983 “The Nancy Yewell Collection,” Baxter Art Gallery,
Pasadena, CA
1983 Palm Springs Desert Museum, Palm Springs, CA
1983 Thomas Babeor Gallery, La Jolla, CA
1982 “Downtown Los Angeles,” WAAM/The Art Museum
1982 Association, traveling Exhibition: Madison Art Center, WI;
UC, San Diego, CA; Art Museum of South Texas, Corpus Cristi; San Francisco Museum of Art, CA; DeCordova Museum, Lincoln, MA; Denver Art Museum, CO
1982 “Forgotten Dimension…A Survey of Small Sculpture in California Now,” Fresno Arts Center, Fresno, CA,Traveling Exhibition
1982 “Architectural References,” Gensler & Associates, LA, CA
1982 Baxter Art Gallery, CALTECH, Pasadena, CA
1981 Newport Harbor Art Museum, Newport Beach, CA
1981 Community Redevelopment Agency, Los Angeles, CA
1981 Neil G. Ovsey Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
1980 Kirk de Gooyer Gallery, Los Angeles, CA
1980 “Sculpture ‘80,” Maryland Art Institute, Baltimore, MD
1980 “Six Los Angeles Sculptors,” Federal Reserve Board, D.C.
1980 Federal Reserve Bank, Los Angeles, CA
1980 Protech/McIntosh Gallery, Washington, DC
1980 Mittendorf Lane Gallery, Washington, DC
1980 “Downtown Los Angeles in Santa Barbara,” Santa
1980 Barbara Museum of Art, Santa Barbara, CA
1980 Stage One Gallery, Orange, CA
1980 Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions (LACE), CA
1979 “LAX 814,” Los Angeles, CA
1979 Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions (LACE), CA
1979 Los Angeles Institute of Contemporary Art (LAICA), CA
1978 Los Angeles Contemporary Exhibitions (LACE), CA
1977 “Introductions ‘77,” William Sawyer Gallery, San Francisco
1977 “Art in Public Places,” City Hall, Los Angeles, CA
1976 Mid-Continental Plaza, Chicago, IL
1976 Del Mar College, Corpus Cristi, TX
1976 Ball State University, Muncie, IN
1975 First Federal Savings and Loan, Chicago, IL
1975 “Sculpture 1975,” Traveling Exhibition
1974 Evansville Museum of Arts and Sciences, Evansville, IN
1972 North Carolina State Museum, Raleigh, NC

SELECTED PUBLIC COLLECTIONS
American Film Institute, Los Angeles
ARCO, Los Angeles, Ca
Boise Art Museum, Boise, ID
Cypress College, Cypress, CA California
Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, CA
Frederic R. Weisman Museum of Art, Pepperdine Univ., Malibu, CA
Grunwald Art Center, Armand Hammer Mus. of Art, Los Angeles, CA
Hillstone Inc.: Phoenix, AZ , New York, NY, San Francisco, CA, Los Angeles, CA, Dallas, TX, Winter Park, FL
Laguna Museum of Art, Laguna Beach, CA
Long Beach Museum of Art, Long Beach, CA
Los Angeles County Museum of Art, (permanent col.) Los Angeles, CA
Orange County Museum of Art, Newport Beach, CA
Palm Springs Desert Museum, Palm Springs, CA
State of California
San Diego Museum of Art, La Jolla, CA
Security Pacific National Bank, Los Angeles
State University, Fullerton, CA
United Bank, Houston, TX
University Art Museum, CSU, Long Beach, CA
University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, N.C.

SELECTED LARGE SCALE COMMISSIONS:
2010 Segovia of Palm Desert, Palm Desert, CA
2010 Oak Creek Plaza, Agoura Hills, CA
2009 Baylor University, Waco, TX
1009 Ritz-Carlton Highlands, Lake Tahoe, CA
2008 Hyatt Grand Champions, Indian Wells, CA
2007 Tower Medical, Beverly Hills, CA
2006 Four Seasons Hotel, St. Louis, MO
2000 Media Studios, Burbank, CA
2000 City of Hope, Duarte, CA
1998-1999 Lewis Business Center, Prudential Real Estate Van Nuys, CA
1997 Cedars-Sinai Hospital, Los Angeles, CA
1996 California State University, Long Beach, CA
1995 Sterling Research Group, Kodak Corp., Philadelphia, PA
1994 Xerox Corporation, New York, NY
1993 Neutrogena Corporation, Los Angeles, CA
1991 Carnation Corporation, Glendale, CA
1990 Sookie Goldman Nature Center, The William O. Douglas Outdoor Classroom, Bev. Hills, CA
1993 University of Southern California, Los Angeles, CA
1987 IBM, Federal Facility, Gaithersberg, MD
1987 Cranston Securities, Washington, DC and Los Angeles, CA
1986 Edward J. DeBartolo Corp., Palm Springs, CA
1986 California Arts Council, DMV, Arleta, CA
1986 Bel Age Hotel, L.A., CA
1986 Highland Resources, Inc., East Camden, AK
1985 Metropolitan Life Insurance, Inc., Los Angeles, CA
1985 Siena Park, Boulder, CO
1985 L’Ermitage Hotel, Beverly Hills, CA
1985 Brushy Creek National Bank, Round Rock, TX
1985 Franklin and Marshall College, Lancaster, PA
1985 Harvard School, Woodland Hills, CA
1984 Otis Art Institute, McArthur Park Public Arts Prog., L.A. CA
1984 Highland Joint Venture, Austin, TX
1984 Highland Resources, Inc., Houston, TX
1981 Little Tokyo Towers, Los Angeles, CA

SELECTED BIBLIOGRAPHY
1979 Erickson, Laurel: “Downtown LA Artist,” NBC News Special Report
1979 Muchnic, Suzanne: “Public Art, Public Problems,” Artweek
1979 Hugo, Joan: “Six Downtown Sculptors,” Artweek
1979 Muchnic, Suzanne: “A Train of Thought at Union Station”
1977 Visual Dialog
1980 Muchnic, Suzanne: “Davy Sculpture: Form in Flux,” Los Angeles Times
1981 Hopps, Walter: “Six LA Sculptors,” Federal Reserve Board, Washingto, DC
1981 Hopkins, Henry: “Six LA Sculptors,” Federal Reserve Board
1981 Knight, Christopher: “Sculpture Proposals for Downtown Los Angeles,” Los Angeles Herald Examiner
1981 Hugo, Joan: “Woods Davy Sculpture,” Security Pacific Bank
1981 Wortz, Melinda: Exhibition Review, Artnews
1981 Wilson, William: “How Real is the Downtown Phenomenon?” Los Angeles Times
1981 Moreland, Pamela: “Investing in Art,” Calif. State Bar Journal,
1981 Muchnic, Suzanne: “The City as At Center,” Los Angeles Times
1981 Wilson, William: “Art,” Los Angeles Times
1981 Garver, Thomas: Downtown Los Angeles, catalog, traveling exhibition
1982 Wilson, William: “Sculptor Takes Government Seat,” Los Angeles Times
1982 Taylor, Ruth Ashton: interview, CBS
1982 KPFK interview
1982 Smith, Michael: “Of No Particular Theme,” Baxter Art Gallery, Cal Tech, catalog
1983 Wilson, William: art review, Los Angeles Times
1983 Pincus, Robert: The Galleries, Los Angeles Times
1983 “State of the Arts,” Los Angeles Times
1983 Clark, Orville O.: “Woods Davy at Hunsaker/Schlesinger,”
1983 Images & Issues
1984 Wilson, William: “MacArthur Park to Get Public Arts Program,” Los Angeles Times
1984 Pincus, Robert: Woods Davy – New Public Art
1984 Nodal, Al: MacArthur Park Public Places Program
1984 Designers West: “Los Angeles: Woods Davy Sculpture Installed at Otis Parsons”
1984 Filler, Martin: “Quinn Essential,” House & Garden
1985 Muchnic, Suzanne: art review, Los Angeles Times
1985 Brumberg, Dan: “Making Art Work,” Club Ties
1985 Sinasky, Debra: “Art Abounds in Little Tokyo”
1985 The Contemporary (MOCA)
1985 Everingham, Carol J.: “Critic’s Choice”
1985 TheHouston Post
1985 Winckler, Suzanne: “Elysian Fields,” Houston Home and Garden
1985 Flanagan, Barbara: “The Battle of MacArthur Park,” Artnews
1985 Talk of Texas – Sculpture: Woods Davy and Jesus Moroles; Ultra
1986 Lewis, Jo Ann: “Woods Davy’s Sculptures,” Washington Post
1986 Sculpture Garden – Woods Davy; DeBartolo Corp.
1987 McKenna, Kristine: art review; Los Angeles Times
1988 Glenn, Constance: “Home is Where the Art Is,”Angeles
1988 Latempa, Susan: A Walk on the Art Side,” L.A. Style
1989 Pincus, Robert: art review, San Diego Union-Tribune
1990 Pittel, Christine: “LA High Life,” (Schlesinger residence); Elle Decor
1990 Berland, Dinah: “Spirit of Southland in Two Sculptor’s 1990 Works,”; Long Beach Press Telegram
1990 Clark, Orville O.: art review, Southern California House & Garden
1990 Michaels, Donna: “Stone Sculpture,” Art Talk, Jan
1993 Heeger, Susan: “Desert Dreamer,” (Greenberg residence); Garden Design
1994 Saville, Jonathan: “African Genesis, from a Sculptor’s Point of View,” San Diego Reader
1997 “Gordon Davidson Residence,” Architectural Digest
1998 Gibson, Sheila J.: “Rock Star,” The Robb Report
1999 “Artist and Works,” Los Angeles Times
2000 Zimmerer, Kathy: feature art review, Art Scene
2001 Rothman, Tibby: ”Woods Davy, the Alchemist” Venice Paper
2003 Riquelme, Kathleen: “The Studio Book”
2003 Myers, Holly: Gallery reviews – “Granite and stones that defy gravity,” Los Angeles Times
2003 Zimmerer, Kathy: “Woods Davy: Las Piedras”
2004 Nys Dambrot, Shana: “Evidence of Formation”
2007 Webb, Michael: “Venice, CA, Art + Architecture in a Maverick Community
The American Sculptor
2007 AZ, Woods Davy, Cantamar ”Art & Culture: Bentley Projects”
2008 THE Magazine for the Arts, Los Angeles, CA
2009 THE Magazine for the Arts, DFW, TX
2009 Pasatiempo Magazine of Arts, Santa Fe, NM
2010 Aubert, Marie C.: Woods Davy nauturellement <stone>, La Gazette, N.9 DU 5 MARS
2010 Fine Art TV, “Art Affair Cannes”

Carolina Alumni Review: Sorcerer’s Stones, March/April 2015
California-based sculptor Woods Davy has gained international recognition for artistry in balancing found natural elements. Davy’s prolific sculpture practice is rivaled only by his notable collection of Central African masks, both of which feed his interest in collecting and his adoration of architecture and expression.

 

In ancient times a Davy sculpture might have been an object of worship, fear or ritual, and as was customary would have been anointed with oil or milk or smeared with blood of sacrifices.

– Ron Colby, A Man with Stones, documentary film

 

In a studio full of stones, sculptor Woods Davy trains nature to defy what’s natural. He named the series “Cantamar” after the Mexican beach where he gathers the stones used to construct the sculptures.

– KellyAalmond, The Scholar

     

The Woods Davy exhibition at Galerie Marie Laure de L’ecotais in Paris – the first of this artist in Europe – may cause the most cartesian (logical) of us to stop in their tracks. His creations – outcroppings of stones – vacillate between balance and tension, defying mathematic laws, and creating a surprising rapport between opposing forces. The stones appear to float in the air, renouncing their own identity as if their weight no longer existed. They seem to be held in a precarious equilibrium, evoking a feeling of total serenity. 

– Marie C. Aubert, La Gazette

 

For the past twenty-five years, Davy has worked with natural elements, usually incorporating various types of stone in fluid balancing acts that reflect the artist’s western Zen sensibility. The current body of work, entitled “Cantamar,” is created from stones collected on a beach in Mexico of the same name. The smooth, rounded, ovoid stones the artist collects are naturally polished and shaped by years of rolling and tumbling from wave to shore. Davy then assembles these stones in graceful, wave-like arcs that seem to float in space.

 – The American Sculptor

 

Woods Davy might be thought of as among the first “green” post-modern artists. In fact, he comes from a long tradition of post ‘60s artists like John Cage, who either directly or just by their practical sensibility, engage eastern or Zen notions of oneness with nature, organic systems of change as engines of art composition, non-disruptive respect for natural materials in unaltered states, and the fashioning of objects that are not your typical museum pedestal works.

– Artscene

 

Despite the enduring influence of modernism’s emphasis on material integrity –  the paint-for-paint’s sake philosophy that’s held sway for half a century – there is still something thrilling about a work that appears to defy its own natural properties. Such is the case with Woods Davy’s new stone sculpture, which flout the most basic law governing three-dimensional work:  gravity. In each case, the stones are joined end to end with invisible stainless steel pins and appear to be magically floating. The trick might come off as mere novelty, but for the quality of meditative reverence that underpins it. The stones retain their organic form despite their unnatural arrangement, and one is compelled to appreciate – as Davy clearly does – the simple beauty of their shape and texture.  In this sense, the works function like a Zen rock garden and will no doubt be better off in an environment more conducive than an art gallery to the practice of contemplation.

Holly Myers, The Los Angeles Times

 

 Heaven’s Gate is particularly Brancusian in its conversion of hard metal into supremely simple erotic poetry – but its eroticism, with the implication of female sexuality as a spiritual power of divine grandeur, is at the same time another profound identification with the tribal African vision of reality.

Jjonathan Saville, San Diego Reader

 

Davy has become a well-known figure on the urban landscape in recent years, both for his widely visible public commissions, such as a major piece on Wilshire Blvd., as well as many private collections. It was always easy to recognize Davy’s work for its precarious balance of rocks perched on heavy beams. Mixing an Asian sense of spareness with a sensitivity to the tension between natural and urban structures, Davy’s work had found its niche. So, like any good artist, he tried something new. New is only half of it.  Davy’s work is both a radical departure and a highly successful one. The internal tensions and the concern for balance remain, although the forms are no longer cantilevered beams; they are folded steel tubes rising triumphantly from the floor like an outcropping of silvery reeds. Reminiscent of Giaciometti’s attenuated figures as well as the bondage of Michaelangelo’s slaves, these very contemporary abstractions communicate an existential tension between transcendence and restraint, freedom and limitation.

Dinah Berland, Long Beach Press Telegram

Your Name (required)

Your Email (required)

Subject
Woods Davy

Item of interest

Your Message