Curtis Davis

June 27–September 7, 2019 West Gallery
Curtis Davis, installation view, 2019 (Installation view of five sculptures on tables and two paintings on walls: Flowers #1 on the left wall and Flowers #2 on the back. The sculptures are installed on three makeshift tables made of full 4’x8′ sheets of OSB supported by orange, metal sawhorses that are arranged in a v formation. Each table has two sculptures, but the table in the bottom foreground of the image is cropped so only one sculpture is showing.)

Curtis Davis, installation view, 2019

Curtis Davis, installation view, 2019 (Installation view of five sculptures on tables and two paintings on walls: Flowers #2 on the left wall and Flower (pink on green) on the right. All the sculptures are made of found objects including rocks, logs, treated wood, and cardboard that were assembled in to different forms and coated in multiple layers of monochromatic paint, including colors such as mint green, light blue, light pink, gray, and moss green.) 

Curtis Davis, installation view, 2019

Curtis Davis, installation view, 2019 (A close up view of the two sculptures installed on the middle table and the painting Flower (pink on green) on the wall behind them. The sculpture on the left, Rock #8, resembles a rectangular arch constructed of two vertical 3×3’s supporting a horizontal piece of 1×3, all arranged on top of a 4×4 base. There are rocks arranged in the archway on the 4x4 and the entire sculpture is coated in multiple coats of mint green paint. The sculpture on the right, also titled Rock #8, resembles a parking garage and is made of short wooden boards supported by columns of tin cans, with pine cones arranged on them. The entire sculpture  is coated in multiple layers of light blue paint. The painting is an abstract depiction of a pink flower with black stems and leaves accented by little yellow marks on a green background. Around the flower is a loose pattern of white marks. The painting is framed in a Hudson River School cove frame with different types of ripple moulding that has been painted the same green as the painting.)

Curtis Davis, installation view, 2019

Curtis Davis, installation view, 2019 (A close-up view of sculptures Tree Log and Rock #11 installed on a table in front of the painting Flower #1.) 

Curtis Davis, installation view, 2019

Curtis Davis, installation view, 2019 (A close-up view of sculptures Rock #9 and Tree Log2 installed on a table.)

Curtis Davis, installation view, 2019

Curtis Davis Rock #9, 2019 Acrylic on Found Materials 27.5 x 12 x 9.5 in. (A close-up view of Rock #9 installed on a white surface. The sculpture is made of  pieces of treated wood in varying sizes, found logs, and crushed plastic soda bottles. The pieces of treated wood are stacked horizontally making a base for the three skinny logs. On the logs are two crushed plastic soda bottles laid on their sides. The whole sculpture is coated with multiple layers of gray paint.)

Curtis Davis

Rock #9, 2019

Acrylic on Found Materials

27.5 × 12 × 9.5 in.

Curtis Davis Tree Log2, 2019 Acrylic on Found Materials 23 x 13 x in. (A close up view of Tree Log2 installed on a white surface. The sculpture is made of a found log and several rocks arranged on top of a thin piece of wood. The log is lying horizontally on the wooden board and three similarly sized rocks placed on top of it. There are another three rocks lined up next to the log, the two outermost are significantly bigger than the one in the middle. The whole sculpture is coated with multiple layers of bubble gum pink paint.)

Curtis Davis

Tree Log2, 2019

Acrylic on Found Materials

23 × 13 × in.

Curtis Davis  Tree Log, 2019 Acrylic on Found Materials 24 x 17.5 x 10 in. (A close up view of Tree Log installed on a white surface. The sculpture is made of found split log resting on a log wedge and pine cones, all sitting on a bent piece of cardboard. The whole sculpture is covered with multiple layers of moss green paint.) 

Curtis Davis

Tree Log, 2019

Acrylic on Found Materials

24 × 17.5 × 10 in.

Curtis Davis Rock #8, 2019 Acrylic on Found Materials 16.25 x 13 x 9.5 in. (A close up view of Rock #8 installed on a white surface. The sculpture resembles a parking garage or an unfinished building and is made of cans that act as pillars on each corner of a small piece of cardboard. There are three levels of cardboard with pine cones on top of the whole sculpture. The base of the sculpture is a bigger piece of cardboard than the actual structure. Most of the sculpture is coated in multiple layers of light blue acrylic paint, with the exception of a part of an edge on the base, revealing the cardboard.)

Curtis Davis

Rock #8, 2019

Acrylic on Found Materials

16.25 × 13 × 9.5 in.

Curtis Davis Rock #11, 2019 Acrylic on Found Materials 27.5 x 19.5 x 4 in. (A close up, aerial view of Rock #11 installed on a white surface. This work is flatter than most and is rectangular and looks like a relief. There are several rocks in the center and the piece is framed with with pine cones and found wood. The whole sculpture is coated in multiple layers of dark gray paint.)

Curtis Davis

Rock #11, 2019

Acrylic on Found Materials

27.5 × 19.5 × 4 in.

Curtis Davis Flower #10, 2018 Acrylic and Pen on Canvas 20 x 16 in. (A frontal view of the painting Flower #10, a semi-abstract depiction of a flower. In the center of the image is a white stem with long green leaves pointing downward beneath what looks like an orange slice. Around the central elements is an organic, pink shape superimposed on top of another organic blue shape. All of the elements are painted on a red background.)

Curtis Davis

Flower #10, 2018

Acrylic and Pen on Canvas

20 × 16 in.

Curtis Davis Flower #1, 2017 Acrylic and Pen on Canvas 24.5 x 18 in. (A frontal view of the painting Flower #1, a depiction of four flowers in what looks like a bright blue glass vessel. The edge of the red table the vessel sits on is partially visible in the glass, and the rest of space around the vessel is painted black with brushy white marks.)

Curtis Davis

Flower #1, 2017

Acrylic and Pen on Canvas

24.5 × 18 in.

Press Release

White Columns is proud to present the first New York solo exhibition by the Cincinnati-based artist Curtis Davis. The exhibition is presented in collaboration with Visionaries + Voices (Cincinnati) as a part of the city-wide 2019 CONDO New York project.

This will be White Columns second collaboration with Visionaries + Voices, following our 2016 solo presentation of Dale Jackson’s work. Established in 2003 in Cincinnati, OH, Visionaries + Voices is a non-profit organization that provides exhibition opportunities, studio space, and support to more than 125 visual artists with disabilities.

Curtis Davis’s exhibition at White Columns centers around a recent group of his visceral painted sculptural works. Davis’s process begins with the construction of a sculptural armature, typically created from found or scavenged materials, inc. rocks, debris, pine cones, sections of tree trunks, scrap wood and cardboard. Davis then proceeds to paint these resultant structures with layer-upon-layer of monochromatic paint, with each subsequent layer concealing the previous one. Creating in turn an accumulative, all-over, skin-like surface that both envelops and transforms the – now increasingly obscured – sculpture below.

Presented on table-top platforms – that echo Davis’s studio set up – these hybrid ‘painting-sculptures’ suggest a form of improvised architecture: e.g. the visionary, expressionistic constructions of Hermann Finsterlin (1887-1973) come to mind, as does Martin Kippenberger’s iconic 1988 artist’s book ‘Psychobuildings’. Davis’s complex and ambiguous work ultimately reverberates with the multiple – and often confused – histories of modernist sculpture, where a partial list of antecedents might include: Dada assemblage and the idiosyncratic sculptural works of artists as different as Ken Price, A.R. Penck, Franz West, B. Wurtz, Judith Scott, Vincent Fecteau, and Rachel Harrison, among (many) others.

This exhibition builds upon White Columns’ now 15-year history of collaborations with art centers and studio programs that support communities of artists living and working with disabilities, including projects with artists affiliated with the following organizations: Creative Growth (Oakland, CA); N.I.A.D. (Richmond, CA); H.A.I. (New York); Fountain House (New York); First Street (Claremont, CA); Gateway Arts (Brookline, MA); and Visionaries + Voices (Cincinnati, OH).

White Columns would like to thank everyone at Visionaries + Voices for their enthusiastic support in bringing Curtis Davis’s work to White Columns. To learn more about Visionaries + Voices, their mission and the artists they support, visit: www.visionariesandvoices.com

To learn more about the city-wide CONDO New York project, visit: www.condocomplex.org

Curtis Davis, installation view, 2019 (Installation view of five sculptures on tables and two paintings on walls: Flowers #1 on the left wall and Flowers #2 on the back. The sculptures are installed on three makeshift tables made of full 4’x8′ sheets of OSB supported by orange, metal sawhorses that are arranged in a v formation. Each table has two sculptures, but the table in the bottom foreground of the image is cropped so only one sculpture is showing.)
Curtis Davis, installation view, 2019 (Installation view of five sculptures on tables and two paintings on walls: Flowers #2 on the left wall and Flower (pink on green) on the right. All the sculptures are made of found objects including rocks, logs, treated wood, and cardboard that were assembled in to different forms and coated in multiple layers of monochromatic paint, including colors such as mint green, light blue, light pink, gray, and moss green.) 
Curtis Davis, installation view, 2019 (A close up view of the two sculptures installed on the middle table and the painting Flower (pink on green) on the wall behind them. The sculpture on the left, Rock #8, resembles a rectangular arch constructed of two vertical 3×3’s supporting a horizontal piece of 1×3, all arranged on top of a 4×4 base. There are rocks arranged in the archway on the 4x4 and the entire sculpture is coated in multiple coats of mint green paint. The sculpture on the right, also titled Rock #8, resembles a parking garage and is made of short wooden boards supported by columns of tin cans, with pine cones arranged on them. The entire sculpture  is coated in multiple layers of light blue paint. The painting is an abstract depiction of a pink flower with black stems and leaves accented by little yellow marks on a green background. Around the flower is a loose pattern of white marks. The painting is framed in a Hudson River School cove frame with different types of ripple moulding that has been painted the same green as the painting.)
Curtis Davis, installation view, 2019 (A close-up view of sculptures Tree Log and Rock #11 installed on a table in front of the painting Flower #1.) 
Curtis Davis, installation view, 2019 (A close-up view of sculptures Rock #9 and Tree Log2 installed on a table.)
Curtis Davis Rock #9, 2019 Acrylic on Found Materials 27.5 x 12 x 9.5 in. (A close-up view of Rock #9 installed on a white surface. The sculpture is made of  pieces of treated wood in varying sizes, found logs, and crushed plastic soda bottles. The pieces of treated wood are stacked horizontally making a base for the three skinny logs. On the logs are two crushed plastic soda bottles laid on their sides. The whole sculpture is coated with multiple layers of gray paint.)
Curtis Davis Tree Log2, 2019 Acrylic on Found Materials 23 x 13 x in. (A close up view of Tree Log2 installed on a white surface. The sculpture is made of a found log and several rocks arranged on top of a thin piece of wood. The log is lying horizontally on the wooden board and three similarly sized rocks placed on top of it. There are another three rocks lined up next to the log, the two outermost are significantly bigger than the one in the middle. The whole sculpture is coated with multiple layers of bubble gum pink paint.)
Curtis Davis  Tree Log, 2019 Acrylic on Found Materials 24 x 17.5 x 10 in. (A close up view of Tree Log installed on a white surface. The sculpture is made of found split log resting on a log wedge and pine cones, all sitting on a bent piece of cardboard. The whole sculpture is covered with multiple layers of moss green paint.) 
Curtis Davis Rock #8, 2019 Acrylic on Found Materials 16.25 x 13 x 9.5 in. (A close up view of Rock #8 installed on a white surface. The sculpture resembles a parking garage or an unfinished building and is made of cans that act as pillars on each corner of a small piece of cardboard. There are three levels of cardboard with pine cones on top of the whole sculpture. The base of the sculpture is a bigger piece of cardboard than the actual structure. Most of the sculpture is coated in multiple layers of light blue acrylic paint, with the exception of a part of an edge on the base, revealing the cardboard.)
Curtis Davis Rock #11, 2019 Acrylic on Found Materials 27.5 x 19.5 x 4 in. (A close up, aerial view of Rock #11 installed on a white surface. This work is flatter than most and is rectangular and looks like a relief. There are several rocks in the center and the piece is framed with with pine cones and found wood. The whole sculpture is coated in multiple layers of dark gray paint.)
Curtis Davis Flower #10, 2018 Acrylic and Pen on Canvas 20 x 16 in. (A frontal view of the painting Flower #10, a semi-abstract depiction of a flower. In the center of the image is a white stem with long green leaves pointing downward beneath what looks like an orange slice. Around the central elements is an organic, pink shape superimposed on top of another organic blue shape. All of the elements are painted on a red background.)
Curtis Davis Flower #1, 2017 Acrylic and Pen on Canvas 24.5 x 18 in. (A frontal view of the painting Flower #1, a depiction of four flowers in what looks like a bright blue glass vessel. The edge of the red table the vessel sits on is partially visible in the glass, and the rest of space around the vessel is painted black with brushy white marks.)

Curtis Davis, installation view, 2019 (Installation view of five sculptures on tables and two paintings on walls: Flowers #1 on the left wall and Flowers #2 on the back. The sculptures are installed on three makeshift tables made of full 4’x8′ sheets of OSB supported by orange, metal sawhorses that are arranged in a v formationEach table has two sculptures, but the table in the bottom foreground of the image is cropped so only one sculpture is showing.)

Curtis Davis, installation view, 2019 (Installation view of five sculptures on tables and two paintings on walls: Flowers #2 on the left wall and Flower (pink on green) on the right. All the sculptures are made of found objects including rocks, logs, treated wood, and cardboard that were assembled in to different forms and coated in multiple layers of monochromatic paint, including colors such as mint green, light blue, light pink, gray, and moss green.)

Curtis Davis, installation view, 2019 (A close up view of the two sculptures installed on the middle table and the painting Flower (pink on green) on the wall behind them. The sculpture on the left, Rock #8, resembles a rectangular arch constructed of two vertical 3×3’s supporting a horizontal piece of 1×3, all arranged on top of a 4×4 base. There are rocks arranged in the archway on the 4×4 and the entire sculpture is coated in multiple coats of mint green paintThe sculpture on the right, also titled Rock #8, resembles a parking garage and is made of short wooden boards supported by columns of tin cans, with pine cones arranged on them. The entire sculpture  is coated in multiple layers of light blue paint. The painting is an abstract depiction of a pink flower with black stems and leaves accented by little yellow marks on a green background. Around the flower is a loose pattern of white marks. The painting is framed in a Hudson River School cove frame with different types of ripple moulding that has been painted the same green as the painting.)

Curtis Davis, installation view, 2019 (A close-up view of sculptures Tree Log and Rock #11 installed on a table in front of the painting Flower #1.)

Curtis Davis, installation view, 2019 (A close-up view of sculptures Rock #9 and Tree Log2 installed on a table.)

Curtis Davis Rock #9, 2019 Acrylic on Found Materials 27.5 × 12 × 9.5 in. (A close-up view of Rock #9 installed on a white surface. The sculpture is made of  pieces of treated wood in varying sizes, found logs, and crushed plastic soda bottles. The pieces of treated wood are stacked horizontally making a base for the three skinny logs. On the logs are two crushed plastic soda bottles laid on their sides. The whole sculpture is coated with multiple layers of gray paint.)

Curtis Davis Tree Log2, 2019 Acrylic on Found Materials 23 × 13 × in. (A close up view of Tree Log2 installed on a white surface. The sculpture is made of a found log and several rocks arranged on top of a thin piece of wood. The log is lying horizontally on the wooden board and three similarly sized rocks placed on top of it. There are another three rocks lined up next to the log, the two outermost are significantly bigger than the one in the middle. The whole sculpture is coated with multiple layers of bubble gum pink paint.)

Curtis Davis  Tree Log, 2019 Acrylic on Found Materials 24 × 17.5 × 10 in.  (A close up view of Tree Log installed on a white surface. The sculpture is made of found split log resting on a wedge cardboard. The whole sculpture is covered with multiple layers of moss green paint.)

Curtis Davis Rock #8, 2019 Acrylic on Found Materials 16.25 × 13 × 9.5 in. (A close up view of Rock #8 installed on a white surface. The sculpture resembles a parking garage or an unfinished building and is made of cans that act as pillars on each corner of a small piece of cardboard. There are three levels of cardboard with pine cones on top of the whole sculpture. The base of the sculpture is a bigger piece of cardboard than the actual structure. Most of the sculpture is coated in multiple layers of light blue acrylic paint, with the exception of a part of an edge on the base, revealing the cardboard.)

Curtis Davis Rock #11, 2019 Acrylic on Found Materials 27.5 × 19.5 × 4 in. (A close up, aerial view of Rock #11 installed on a white surface. This work is flatter than most and is rectangular and looks like a relief. There are several rocks in the center and the piece is framed with with pine cones and found wood. The whole sculpture is coated in multiple layers of dark gray paint.)

Curtis Davis Flower #10, 2018 Acrylic and Pen on Canvas 20 × 16 in. (A frontal view of the painting Flower #10, a semi-abstract depiction of a flower. In the center of the image is a white stem with long green leaves pointing downward beneath what looks like an orange slice. Around the central elements is an organic, pink shape superimposed on top of another organic blue shape. All of the elements are painted on a red background.)

Curtis Davis Flower #1, 2017 Acrylic and Pen on Canvas 24.5 × 18 in. (A frontal view of the painting Flower #1, a depiction of four flowers in what looks like a bright blue glass vessel. The edge of the red table the vessel sits on is partially visible in the glass, and the rest of space around the vessel is painted black with brushy white marks.)