Larry J. Davis, a native Iowan, grew up along the Mississippi River. After attaining a BA in Fine Art at the University of Iowa he completed a four-year tour with the USAF in England before returning to the Midwest to begin his professional arts career. In 1986 Davis moved to Jacksonville, Florida, where he took a position at what is now Florida State College at Jacksonville, serving as both a full time Professor of Art and for many years as art department coordinator. During this time he finished Masters Degree studies at Jacksonville University while also pursuing an active artistic output and exhibition schedule. His 2010 retirement from academia saw a long awaited return to full time studio activity. The 2012 relocation of Davis Studio to Knoxville, IL was an opportunity to reunite with the Midwest culture and landscape that has long been inspiring to the artist.
“…my main interest centers on the quality of paint surface, for the character of gestural marks and for the use of complex color and tonal relationships.”
Much of my experience as an artist has been spent pursuing two contrasting motives for making images. As a beginning artist I followed Alberti’s idea that creating pictures was like looking through a window at the world beyond. Thus, my early ambitions centered on a highly naturalistic narrative style. However, exposure to the Abstract Expressionist art of the1950’s and 60’s resulted in my growing appreciation that works could celebrate their own intrinsic formal qualities of shape, color and line without the need to represent an objective subject. I continue to value both of these fundamental approaches. While acknowledging the subsequent Post-Modern trends of deconstruction and reappropriation, my main interest centers on the quality of paint surface, the character of gestural marks and for the use of complex color and tonal relationships.