Another Side of Stuart Davis, the Black and White, to Go on Display
Hilary Sheets of The New York Times
Stuart Davis, a leading American modernist who died in 1964, is best known for his boldly colorful paintings. They reduced consumer products and billboards into hard-edge shapes and dynamic rhythms inspired by street life and jazz. But his art theories were rooted in drawing, not color, according to Earl Davis, the artist’s only child, who oversees his father’s estate.
“At various points he decided to focus just on the integrity of the drawing as a finished painting and considered black and white colors unto themselves,” Mr. Davis said.
The first exhibition in more than three decades devoted to these large-scale black-and-white works on canvas and paper will go on view in September at the Paul Kasmin Gallery in Chelsea, which is now representing the Stuart Davis estate worldwide. Some 25 of these works, which first appeared in the early 1920s and accelerated in the 1950s when the artist was paring down and recycling earlier motifs that he called “beat-up subject matter,” will be shown. One, a black-and-white variation on “Quinciette” from 1964, has never before been exhibited.
Image: Stuart Davis, (Letter and His Ecol. (Black and White Version)), 1962, casein on canvas, 24 x 30 inches, 61 x 76.2 cm. © Estate of Stuart Davis/Licensed by VAGA, New York, NY.