Stuart Davis

Stuart Davis

Stuart Davis

Stuart Davis

Excerpt

To many people a picture is a replica of a thing, or a story about some kind of situation. To an artist, on the other hand, it is an object which has been formed by an individual in response to emotional and intellectual needs. His purpose is never to counterfeit a subject but to develop a new subject. His purpose is also to live in giving importance to certain qualities in himself, which everyone presumably possesses, but which relatively few cultivate.

This is the core of Stuart Davis' artistic beliefs. This is the line along which he has worked since his student days under Robert Henri, through the lesson of The Armory Show of 1913, to the realization of one of the most individual American pictorial idioms of our period. Humor, a responsiveness to environment, and a clear-thinking realistic outlook, in addition to his native feeling for color and compositional relationships, are the qualities which Davis has most consistently cultivated. These are the qualities which form the backbone of his work, which give it its warmth, its bluntness, its infectious vitality.

Paris School, abstraction, escapism? Nope, just color-space compositions celebrating the resolution in art of stresses set up by some aspects of the American scene.*

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