Known for his colorful “puddle” paintings, Ian Davenport has gone to great lengths in the name of experimentation, once even using an industrial wind machine to blow paint onto a canvas, creating colorful art.
Ian Davenport studied at Goldsmiths’ College of Art in London, graduating in 1988 with a B.A. in Fine Art. In the same year, he exhibited in the Damien Hirst-curated Freeze exhibition which first brought together many of the later-to-be Young British Artists. In 1991, he was nominated for the annual Turner Prize. His work has been exhibited internationally, and is included in many public collections such as the Tate, London, the Weltkunst Collection, Zurich, and the Dallas Museum of Art, Texas.
In his recent works, the artist has been applying paint with a syringe, allowing it to run down the support (often steel) in distinct bands and puddle at the base. The precision of the syringe allows him to focus more on color and the sequence of color rather than “on the paint and how it flows.” Davenport’s vivid pigments and unconventional methods recall the stain paintings of Morris Louis, who also allowed gravity to play a role in the outcome of his works. Davenport graduated from Goldsmith’s College in London in 1988, the same year he exhibited in the “Freeze” exhibition curated by fellow Young British Artist Damien Hirst.
Charting a history of intensely rigorous and unconventional painting processes, Martin Filler guides the reader through twenty-five years of artistic production. From early electric-fan paintings, to his poured arches, circles, lines and puddle paintings, we see how Davenport has experimented with method and medium, exploring varying qualities and applications of paint, both in his early monochrome paintings and in his later complex colour combinations.