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Joint Exhibition
Derek Davis – New Paintings
Josse Davis – Ceramics
4th - 27th February 2005

In this exhibtition we are pleased to show new figurative and abstract paintings by Derek Davis alongside figurative ceramics by his son, Josse Davis.

Derek Davis, one of Britain’s leading post war potters, was born in 1926. He studied painting at the Central School, London.

In the post-war period and into the fifties and sixties he pushed the boundaries of clay, at a time when most potters followed the teachings of Bernard Leach (for whom form was determined as much by function as aesthetics). This stemmed from his imagination and inquisitiveness for materials, concepts and ideas not usually associated with clay, but more clearly aligned with fine art. He would decorate a ceramic platter in the same way that he now paints on canvas.

Derek is a member of the Contemporary Applied Arts, the International Academy of Ceramics, and in 1967 was Artist in Residence at the University of Sussex.

In recent years, since 1994, he has concentrated on painting, in both his abstract and figurative signature style, the latter often being on the subject of love and relationships.

He has exhibited widely including three times at the V&A (1960, 1983 and 1994), throughout the UK, Europe and the USA (Maceys) and Japan (T Moriyama, Tokyo). Derek Davis’ work is in a number of collections including V&A, Contemporary Art Society, Garth Clark Colorado, Aberdeen Museum and the Ford Motor Company (Brentwood).

Born in 1959, Josse Davis is the son of Derek Davis and painter Ruth Davis. He graduated from Bath Academy of Art in 1981 (BA hons ceramics), and has since lived and worked in Arundel, West Sussex.

Figurative and often described as traditionally English in his approach to decoration, his work is divided into two distinct styles; the loose and spontaneous and the more subtle and disciplined.

Although found in his stoneware the spontaneous decoration is most evident in his Raku pieces. The second style of decoration is more refined and is the emotional balance to the first. These pieces of work are less colourful and more tonal. Under a zinc white stoneware glaze thin layers of iron and black are meticulously painted, smudged back and painted again until the required subtle tonal changes are achieved.

The Raku pieces are decorated with his Pagan dancers theme, whilst the stoneware pieces are decorated with various animal themes including zebra, sheep and fish.

Josse has taught ceramics at Havant College, Syon House and Portsmouth City Museum (amongst others). He has exhibited at Beaux Art, Bath; Leigh Gallery, London; Cre Gallery, London; Guildhall, Winchester; West Dean College; London Potters Summer Show; Amalgam Gallery, London; Hove & Worthing Museums and Pallant House, Chichester.

Contact James Stewart at the Zimmer Stewart Gallery for images of more information.

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