Andy Davies

Lethbridge, AB

Andy Davies

Featured Sculpture

Andy Davies - Mollusk (aluminum)

Lethbridge-based artist Andy Davies identifies himself as "a sculptor of public spaces." With a number of commissions under his belt, he has recognized that public art best suits his visually stunning, streamlined minimalist style.

"I believe art can – and should – be a learning process and build community," he says emphatically. "Public art is unique in that it can be conceptual, formally resolved, and accessible (tactile, kinetic, or otherwise) to a broad audience.”

His public art works currently grace public spaces in Thunder Bay, Red Deer and his hometown of Lethbridge. In progress are commissions to be permanently mounted in Medicine Hat and White Rock later this year.

His work here at Sculpturewalk displays his innovative, always imaginative style well. Mollusk consists of three aluminum domes of different sizes, carefully spaced so that they increase exponentially in surface exposure. A portion of the domes is buried to imply beginnings of growth and forward progression.

"I want to impart the idea of forward movement, of improvement and advancement," he explains. "Whether it is us as a species, or simply an individual in their own everyday existence, the idea of rising up and moving forward is what I am trying to encapsulate.

"To me the title and the nameplate fit perfectly," he says laughing, "but to some it might look like a wrecked UFO. That's the beauty of public pieces - everyone is free to see something different."

Different is fine in Davies' books. In addition to large-scale public pieces, he is venturing into sculptural design works. One example is a series of modified alignments of multiple common doorstoppers - the coiled type with rubber tip - mounted on walls.

His vision, talent and imagination saw him graduate at the top of his class in 2009 with a combined Bachelor of Fine Arts and Bachelor of Education degree and he hasn't looked back.

The following year found him at The Works International Art and Design Festival in Edmonton's downtown Winston Churchill Square. His Wettings consisted of him brushing water over the shadows - usually people - created by the day.

"That's what I call ephemeral art!" he laughs, reminiscing. "But you know, we were videoing and people loved it, the crazy shapes created by themselves briefly captured with water and a brush. It was great fun!"

For his 2010 installation (We All Fit Together) at Red Deer's newly renovated G.H. Dawe Community Centre, Davies worked collaboratively with Grade 3 & 4 students from two local schools, incorporating their ideas and artwork. The result was brightly coloured, jigsaw puzzle-like pieces that fill the skylight of the Centre's gathering space. Some are attached to the walls; others dangle at varying lengths as if floating in midair, reflecting shadows and light everywhere.

"The sense of pride and ownership children feel in being an active part of their environment is essential to their self-esteem and the building of strong community bonds," he says passionately.

"As a teacher, I am aware that art can be a powerful educational tool, and when public art is accessible, it can provide the basis for a more profound understanding and conversation about the role of art in society. I am interested in the role that public art plays as a catalyst in giving people opportunities to engage and interact with art, and with each other."

www.andydavies.ca

Artist's Sculptures