Beacon Gallery’s current show (through March 11th) is called “Praxis: Malcolm Montague Davis” and features Davis’s extraordinary paintings and models in a one-man show dedicated to selected themes from Davis’s work.
Davis’s colorful paintings and the models on which he based them are rooted in his training as an architect. He graduated from Harvard Graduate School of Design in 1958 and went to go work at The Architects Collaborative soon after.
The Architects Collaborative is well-known in the world of architecture. It was founded by eight leading architects, including Walter Gropius, one of the founders of Germany’s Bauhaus school, and a pioneer of modernist architecture.
To learn more about the importance of The Architects Collaborative, here is a good article from Architecture Boston.
Davis’s years with the firm were spent working both in the Boston area as well as in Rome and Yangon, Myanmar, where he helped to design such buildings as the University of Beirut and the University of Yangon. Eventually, Davis went on to join another practice in the Boston area where he continued to design both residential homes and commercial buildings.
Davis began painting about eighteen years ago once he retired. He focuses on both man-made and natural forms in his work. This process often begins with a model, which he creates and then photographs from different angles and with different light. Davis then designs his color scheme to reflect his artistic intentions.
As Davis says in his own words, “The paintings are generated from my architectural drawings, which have been surveyed to yield visually stimulating compositions. Colored paper maquettes are made to study the proportions and color relationships. From these paper studies, candidates are culled to be enlarged into paintings. A single building may result in several paintings, which depict its diverse features.
Paintings are also generated from my sculptures. The sides are colored to convey a concept and to represent a particular locale. The sculpture becomes a mandrel, or mannequin, onto which the color system is applied.”
Come check out Davis’s work while it’s up at the gallery, and join us for a talk by Malcolm Montague Davis on his work at 6 pm on Saturday, March 10th as part of a closing reception!