An untitled painting by Noah Davis, dated 2015.
Noah Davis
A still from an aerial drone panoramic video of Piazza San Marco featuring Doge's Palace, Basilica and Campanile, Venice, Italy.

Ruth AsawaNoah DavisBarbara KrugerAndra Ursuţa, and Portia Zvavahera are among the artists invited to the 59th International Art Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia, curated by Cecilia Alemani. Titled The Milk of Dreams, the exhibition will be on view from April 23–November 27, 2022, and takes its name from a book by Surrealist artist Leonora Carrington. Tau Lewis, whose exhibition at 52 Walker opens this fall, is also among the artists featured. Learn more at La Biennale di Venezia

Among the national pavilions, Francis Alÿs will represent Belgium. The pavilion will be curated by Hilde Teerlinck, a curator at the Han Nefkens Foundation in Barcelona. Alÿs, whose work featured in the main exhibition at the Biennale Arte in 1999, 2001, and 2007, will present new work developed from his 2017 video Children’s Games #19: Haram Football. Learn more at the Belgian Pavilion

Stan Douglas has been selected to represent Canada. Douglas’s work has previously been exhibited at the Biennale Arte in 1990, 2001, 2005, and 2019. Learn more at the National Gallery of Canada.

Concurrently with the 59th International Art Exhibition of La Biennale di Venezia, the Palazzo Grassi in Venice will present open-end, a major monographic exhibition dedicated to Marlene Dumas, opening to the public on March 27, 2022. It is the latest in a cycle of monographic shows dedicated to major contemporary artists, launched in 2012 and alternating with thematic exhibitions of the Pinault Collection.

The exhibition is curated by Caroline Bourgeois in collaboration with Marlene Dumas; it brings together over 100 works and focuses on her whole pictorial production, with a selection of paintings and drawings created between 1984 and today, including unseen works made in the last few years. The exhibition will remain open to the public from March 27, 2022–January 8, 2023. Learn more from the Palazzo Grassi.

Congratulations to all eight of our artists whose work will be featured in Venice in 2022. 

The Underground Museum announced today the winners of their inaugural Noah Davis Prize. Named for the visionary artist and curator who co-founded the museum, the prize honors three curators who are transforming their respective fields and broadening audiences for culture.

The winners are Candice Hopkins for Art for a New Understanding: Native Voices, 1950s to Now, Jamillah James for A Shape That Stands Up, and Thomas Jean Lax for Judson Dance Theater: The Work is Never Done. The prize, which is presented in partnership with the CHANEL Culture Fund, endows $25,000 to each winner. The Underground Museum will also present a curatorial symposium featuring the award recipients in Spring 2022.

Co-founded in 2012 by Noah Davis and his wife, the artist Karon Davis, The Underground Museum is a non-profit arts and culture space dedicated to exhibitions and cultural programming. Based in the Arlington Heights neighborhood of Los Angeles, the Museum offers free classes to the local community, as well as food distribution and events for adults, children, and families in its space and garden. The Museum will reopen in January 2022 with an exhibition of paintings spanning Davis’s career, organized by Helen Molesworth.

To read more about the Prize and its 2021 recipients, visit Artnet.

A portrait of Noah Davis, dated 2009.
Noah Davis, 2009. Photo by Patrick O’Brien-Smith

A special episode dedicated to the late artist Noah Davis, with some of the people who knew him best. The curator Helen Molesworth, his brother, the filmmaker Kahlil Joseph, and his wife, the artist Karon Davis, remember Davis, whose legacy continues to grow—through his paintings, which depict everyday life with emotional and formal ambition; The Underground Museum, the space he founded in Los Angeles that combines many different worlds; and the family, literal and figurative, that coalesced around the magnetism of his personality.

A critically acclaimed exhibition of Davis’s work, which was on view at David Zwirner in New York earlier this year, will soon travel to the Underground Museum in Los Angeles. 

Dialogues: The David Zwirner Podcast

Noah Davis

“The low-slung building on Washington Boulevard here might seem like a nondescript storefront sandwiched between a carpet installation business and a lawn mower repair shop.

But in the eight years since it was founded, the Underground Museum has become not only one of the most important destinations for black art in the country but also a crucial gathering place for its working class Arlington Heights neighborhood—with a bookstore featuring works by black writers, poetry readings in the wooden bar and events in its back garden including free meditation, yoga and movie screenings.

As cultural institutions all over the world wrestle with how to bring art to the public during the pandemic, smaller ones like the Underground Museum are also trying to figure out how to continue serving communities that have come to rely on them in other ways.

'It’s not just pretty pictures we’re putting on the wall,' said Karon Davis, an artist who created the museum with her husband, the painter Noah Davis, who was the moving force behind the Underground and died in 2015 of a rare cancer at age 32. 'We’re actually doing a lot of work for the community.'’

Read the full article in The New York Times

In this video, Karon Davis, Thelma Golden, Helen Molesworth—who organized the recent exhibition of Davis’s work at the gallery in New York—and fellow artist Henry Taylor recall Davis’s singular charisma, and how he used it to turn The Underground Museum from a beautiful dream into reality.

Cover image above: Noah Davis, Untitled, 2015

“Art history is full of artists whose careers, cut short by early death, haunt us with their unfulfilled promise. The 20th century is pocked with many such examples, a mere handful of which include Paula Modersohn-Becker (who died at 31); Egon Schiele (28); Bob Thompson (28); Eva Hesse (34); Jean-Michel Basquiat (27).

The 21st century has the painter Noah Davis, now the subject of a big, beautiful exhibition at David Zwirner in Manhattan. He died of a rare cancer in Ojai, Calif., in August 2015, just three months after turning 32.

Talented and charismatic, with a knack for rallying people, Davis was inclusive in his art and his life. He gathered his family and friends around him and refused to commit to a single figurative style or to use photographic images in a formulaic way. Nearly every canvas here is different, and most have an interpretive and painterly openness. Your eyes and mind enter them easily and roam through the different layers of brushwork and narrative suggestion. There’s an unexpected optimism to all this. The paintings also dwell in silence, slow us down and hypnotize.”

Read the full review in The New York Times

Cover image above: Noah Davis, Untitled, 2015

“Davis liked painting people. But only a handful of his works qualify as portraits. Some teeter on abstraction. There is, for instance, an odd, intriguing, not quite successful painting that superimposes two paintings of houses on a brushy, brown abstraction resembling Mark Rothko’s work.

Others read as scenes from dreams. Describing them would be both laborious and redundant. Visually, however, they’re both hallucinatory and credible — unlike standard Surrealistic fare, which almost always feels concocted.

There was nothing formulaic about Davis’s approach. Even when he was painting mundane domestic scenes, his eye for the subject and his painterly treatment infused them with a sly, soft-pedaled, gently melancholy wonder. One thinks of Fairfield Porter with a little more zing, or of a more nonchalant Peter Doig.

In several images, Davis showed people dwarfed by varieties of magical immensity. He would paint a child in blue pajamas at the foot of a daunting wooden staircase leading to a door emitting a mysterious cloud of colored glitter. Or a man looking at a monumental abstract sculpture on the leafy grounds of a wealthy estate. Or simply the night sky over Los Angeles.

But my favorite Davis painting shuns any hint of the sublime. It depicts a mother and her young daughter at a street crossing. Beside them, a man dressed in black and clutching a plastic bag bends over to retrieve something from the gutter.

Merely as a fragment of life, the image is compelling. What makes it great is the division of the composition into taut diagonals and fiercely pulsing stripes. Against these, Davis superimposes the bright, almost jitterbugging mosaic pattern on the mother’s spandex pants. Combining formal audacity with emotional intimacy and sharp social observation, the picture attains a fullness of humorous, sorrowing life.” 

Read the full review in The Washington Post

Cover image above: Noah Davis, Untitled, 2015


    Read More Read Less


      To learn more about this artwork, please provide your contact information.

      By sharing your details you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms and Conditions.
      This site is also protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.


      To learn more about available works, please provide your contact information

      By sharing your details you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms and Conditions.This site is also
      protected by reCAPTCHA and the Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service apply.

      Artwork Added

      Please note: There’s no guarantee that we can hold this work for you until you complete your purchase

      Shipping Calculated at next step

      Your Collection is Empty

      Something went wrong while loading this page. Please try again shortly.
      Something went wrong while loading this page. Please try again shortly.