Alan Davie, The (Wild) Eye of Wonder
Alan Wheatley Art, 2014
Fully illustrated 54 pages catalogue with essays by Dr Michael Tucker and Douglas Hall.
Extract from theessay by Dr Michael Tucker:
... In the work of this exceptional artist – where Apollo and Dionysus butt up against each other to transmutative effect, in new yet simultaneously ancient imaginal ground – the visionary is bodied forth in image after image of consummately realized yet rarely overworked visual quality, testimony to the happy fact that Davie’s eye is at once wild and deeply literate: the élan of his improvised graphic touch flows, often flies out of, and helps bring alive, painterly structures as satisfying in their diversely configured play of the asymmetric and the symmetric, the organic and the geometric, as they are spiritually enlivening in the open-ended boldness of their archetypal suggestiveness.
The art of Alan Davie is indeed a thing of wonder.
Extract from tehessay by Douglass Hall:
... If paint, brush and palette could have a vote, doubtless they would vote Alan Davie their favourite user. He is indeed the finest exponent in his generation of this highly charged medium. I make no apology for using the metaphor of the peacock to denote an important part of his work. The ape he has kept in the background, perhaps useful at times in the construction of ideograms, or pictograms. These creatures I have evoked are animals incapable of rational behaviour. They must be controlled, as paint must be controlled. It is the intellect of the artist that provides the structure, the visual and mental structure, within which paint can perform its manifold miracles. Alan Davie, in my view, is the leading miracle-worker among the artists of his period. If viewers can come to terms with Davie, they will no longer need to be numbered with those who ‘don’t understand modern art’. They will have learned that understanding can never eliminate ambiguity. And reviewing the life of this remarkable man, they will come to see that the abundant humanity and physicality of Alan Davie, so well attested by those who know him and by the photographic record, can never obscure the light of his fundamental spirituality.