biography of Stuart DAVIS (1894-1964)

Birth place: Phialdelphia, PA

Death place: NYC

Addresses: NYC

Profession: Painter, writer, designer, teacher

Studied: Robert Henri Sch., NYC, 1910-13 with Joan Sloan and Henri; ASL

Exhibited: Armory Show, 1913 (5 watercolors); S.Indp.A., 1917, 1918, 1920-23, 1936; Whitney Studio Cl.; NAD, 1919-20; AIC; Soc. Anonyme at Brooklyn Mus., 1926 ("Int'l Exh. of Modern Art"); Salons of Am; PAFA, 1930-64 (medals in 1945, 1956, 1964); Corcoran Gal, 1935-63; Carnegie Inst, 1944 (prize); Cincinnati AM, 1941 (retrospective); Univ. IN, 1941 (retrospective); MoMA, c.1932 ("Murals by Am. Painters and Photographers"), 1945 (retrospective); Boston Inst., 1945 (retrospective); Contemporary A., NYC, 1945 (solo); Nelson Gal., 1945; Venice Biennale, 1952 (solo); Walker Art Cntr, 1957; San Fran MA, 1957; WMAA, 1918-63,1932 (first biennial), 1957 (retrospective), 1965; NMAA, 1965 (memorial exh); AIC, 1951, 1965; UCLA, 1965; London, Paris, and Berlin, 1966; MMA, 1991/92 (retrospective). Other awards: Guggenheim fellow, 1952-53

Member: Am. Soc. PS&G; Brooklyn SA; Modern A. Assn.; Union Am. Artists (pres., 1930s); Soc. Ind. A.; Am. Artists Congress (sec'y, 1936; chmn, 1938; quit 1940 because of its Communist inclinations)

Work: MoMA; WMAA; AIC; PMG; PAFA; CI; LOC; PAFA; PMA; SFMA; SAM; CAM; Munson-William Proctor Inst.; Newark Mus.; Univ. KY; LACMA; Minneapolis IA; Wash. Univ.; Indiana Univ.; Drake Univ., Des Moines; Wadsworth Atheneum, CT; Wichita AM; Yale Univ.; Albright-Knox Gal.; Am. Academy of Arts & Letters; Radio City Music Hall (murals); Conference Room, United Nations (mural from Natl competition, 1955); Heinz Research Cntr, Pittsburgh (mural, 1957); Radio WNYC (mural)

Comments: An important modernist, after 1913 and through the 1930s he developed a style of "Synthetic Cubism." He joined the FAP in 1933, and the Mural Divison of the WPA in 1938. After 1940, influenced by Miro and Matisse, he developed an innovative style that incorporated decorative shapes and colors. Author: articles in Art Front (of which he was Editor), and Magazine of Art. Teacher: ASL, 1931-32; New Sch. Social Research, NYC, 1940-50.

Sources: WW47; Lowery Stokes Sims, Stuart Davis: American Painter (Metrop. Mus. of Art, with H.N. Abrams, 1991); American Abstract Art, 180; Baigell, Dictionary; Abraham Davidson, Early American Modernist Painting, 1910-1935; Falk, Exhibition Record Series