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photo by Caryl Roese
. Ivor Davies
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"View through a Window", 1969,
collage, gouache, printing ink,
oil on canvas,
oil on oilgesso & hessian
tempera on velvetine sofa, figures
at Penpont, Brecon
tempera on velvetine sofa, Meissen figures
at Penpont, Brecon
Ivor/Ifor was born in November 1935 in Treharris, Glamorganshire, South Wales, and brought up to be bilingual. Like his father before him, Ivor was educated at Penarth County School. In 1952, he left school (GCE) and went to art-college because the school made no provision for advanced teaching in art. From 1952 until 1957 Davies studied at Cardiff and Swansea Colleges of Art. This was followed in 1959-61 by two years at the University of Lausanne Switzerland, both as student and assistant teacher. In 1961 he took up a part-time teaching post at the Extramural Department of the University of Wales, teaching Art History. Two years later he applied for a job as assistant lecturer at the University of Edinburgh to teach the history of art in the modern period. This, in time, became a full lectureship. While at Edinburgh, he decided to improve his academic credentials and, by 1975, he had completed his PhD on the subject of the Russian Avant-Garde (“Certain Aspects of Art and Theory in Russia from 1905 to 1924 in their Relationship to the Development of Avant-Garde Art and Ideas in the West”, University of Edigburgh, 1974). In 1978 he became Head of Cultural Studies, at Gwent College of Higher Education until his retirement from teaching in 1988. From then on he devoted his activities entirely to painting..
Teaching Experiences: 1957-59 Little Ealing SMB School London; 1959-61 University of Lausanne & Gymnases; 1961-63 University of Wales Extra Mural Dept.Cardiff; 1963-78 University of Edinburgh Dept.of Fine Art (History of Art); 1978-88 Gwent College of Higher Education Faculty of Fine Art & Design Newport (Head of School);
Member of: Watercolour Soc.of Wales, BECCA, Royal Cambrian Academy (Vice President), International Assoc.of Art Critics, Assoc.of Art Historians.
Awards: numerous, e.g. 1975 National Eisteddfod Purchase Prize (selector William Scott); 1976 Robert Colquhoun Memorial Award; 2002 Discerning Eye, regional prize, Mall Galleries; 2002 winner of the Gold Medal for Fine Art at the National Eisteddfod St.David's/Pemrokeshire; 2004 becomes a Member of the Bardic Cirle at the National Eisteddfod in Newport/Gwent; in the 2007 New Year Honours List he is awarded an MBE for his services to art.
Commissions: numerous, e.g.: 1999 Plain Air, short residency and international symposium of artists to work in media with water as a vehicle, Latvia; 1994 Commission, Centre For Advanced Welsh And Celtic Studies, Aberystwyth; 1990 invitation To Paint, Saudi Arabia; 1990 murals for a major Hong Kong Hotel; 1982 illustrations for Harrod's Shakespeare Diary (Holsworthy); 1982 illustrations for the poems of Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam (see Artist's Books); 1981 book Jacket for Common Denominators In Art And Science; 1971 illustrations for Spirit, Poetry Magazine.
Documentaries: 2005 S4C documentary on the Cardiff Portfolio of six prints (etchings), by Ivor Davies, Terry Setch, Sue Hunt, Annie Giles-Hobbs, Tom Piper and Chris Lloyd, i.e. the V6 group ; 2006 a 6-part S4C series of 12 contemporary Welsh artists taking a fresh look at famous paintings of the Welsh coastline (e.g. Rhyl Harbour, Ivor Davies' own depiction from the same spot where Lowry had painted it. in 2007 he participated in a S4C documentary on the Welsh Princes - Y Tywysogion
collections abroad=1989 Shangrila Hotel Hong Kong (a commission of several paintings); 1990 The Deal Collection of Drawings Dallas/USA; 2001 Museum of Cesis/Latvia;
exhibitions abroad=1960 Galerie Theater Bern/Switzerland (mixed); Galerie Kasper & Bridel Lausanne/Switzerland (mixed); 1981 Cardiff Artists Stuttgart/Germany (mixed); 1986 Palacio Municipal de Exposiciones El Ferrol/Spain (solo); 1986/7 "Celtic Vision" international touring exhibition Madrid, Corunna, Cork, Dublin, Glasgow, Cardiff, Nantes (mixed); 1990 Jedda/Saudi Arabia (solo); 1992 Mandarin Fine Arts Hong Kong (solo); 2001 Arts Council Exhibition "Wales: Unofficial Version" in Zagreb/Croatia (mixed); "Plain Air" Invitation to paint & exhibit in Cesis/Latvia (mixed); 2002 participant in META exhibition Vilnius/Lithuania; March 2002 "Blast To Freeze - British Art in the age of extremes 1914-1990" (touring exhib.) Kunstmuseum Wolfsburg/Germany; 2003 Welsh Group travelling exhib. to North America (mixed); 2006 the Moravia Museum in Brno/Czech Republic.
academia abroad=1977 German Academic Scholarship (DAAD); 1986 featured in PhD thesis on destruction in art by Kristine Stiles, University of California Berkley/USA; 1989 featured in "Destructie in De Kunst" by Diana le Jeune, thesis for the Catholic University Leuven Holland;
membership =1981-85 member of the International Association of Art; 1985- member of the International Association of Art Critics;
biographical entries =International Who's Who in Art & Antiques; Dictionary of International Biography; 2001 exhibition cat. by Alex Farquharson "Wales: unauthorised version" Zagreb/Croatia;
publications abroad=1975 "Western European Art Forms influenced by Nietzsche & Bergson before 1914, particularly Italian Futurism & French Orphism" in 'Art International' Vol.19, pp49-55;
1983 "Giorgio de Chirico: the sources of metaphysical painting in Schopenhauer & Nietzsche" in 'Art International';
2002 "L'Eta Delle Avanguardie (The Age of the Vanguard)", published by Unions Tipographica-Editrice Torinese/Italy.
2006 Marek Pokorny's "Ivor Davies 2006", illustrated exhibition catalogue, publ. Moravska Galerie Brno/Czech Rep.