IMAGE: Jessica Stockholder and Robert Davidson.

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Artists in Conversation: Jessica Stockholder & Robert Davidson

Event is free with RSVP. Roof opens at 12:30P with conversation beginning promptly at 1P. Please arrive early as space is limited; seating is first come first serve. Talk will take place on our outdoor Moody Rooftop.

Don’t miss this rare opportunity to hear Jessica Stockholder and Robert Davidson speak together upon the opening of their concurrent exhibitions, Relational Aesthetics and U and Eye, curated by Jessica Stockholder. The artists will share the varied roots of their artistic inspirations; their mutual interests in color, form, and abstraction; and offer perspectives on one another’s work. Stockholder and Davidson will also reflect on the contexts of display and the diverse audiences for art objects.


About Jessica Stockholder

Jessica Stockholder (American-Canadian, born 1959 in Seattle, Washington, and raised in Vancouver, British Columbia) is an internationally acclaimed visual artist and educator who lives and works in Chicago and Berlin. Her public artworks have been commissioned by museums, municipalities, and corporations around the world.

As an artist, Stockholder is inspired by the relationships she perceives between colors and objects in her everyday visual environment. Her work employs the visual strategies of painting, sculpture, and installation—though it also resists the limitations such terms imply. Another word sometimes used to describe what Stockholder does is “assemblage.” She utilizes “readymade” articles along with traditional artistic mediums, but not in an attempt to make an object, per se; rather, she formulates three-dimensional pictures in space, which interact in unpredictable ways with the environments they occupy. Whether working on a small scale, creating wall works, or on a massive scale creating sculptural installations that extends from inside to out, she explores how perception relates to feelings of chaos and control.

Stockholder’s efforts have had a profound impact on contemporary art, a fact commemorated in 2018 by her election to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, the most prestigious honor the United States bestows upon artists. Her many other awards include a Guggenheim Fellowship, an Anonymous Was A Woman grant, and a Lucelia Artist Award from the Smithsonian American Art Museum. Her work has been exhibited in many of the world’s most influential art venues, including Centre Pompidou in Paris, the Dia Center for the Arts, the Whitney Museum of American Art, and the Venice Biennale. It is included in such museum collections as the Art Institute of Chicago, the Whitney Museum of American Art, LACMA, and the Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam. In addition to earning her B.F.A. from the University of Victoria in Canada and her M.F.A. from Yale University, she was awarded two honorary Doctor of Fine Arts degrees: one from the Emily Carr College of Art in 2010, and one from Columbia College Chicago in 2013. For the past seven years Stockholder has served as the Raymond W. & Martha Hilpert Gruner Distinguished Service Professor and Chair of the Department of Visual Arts at The University of Chicago, a position she accepted in 2011, after 12 years as Director of the Sculpture Department at the Yale School of Art.

Jessica Stockholder Exhibition Support: Revelator, The Exhibition Fund


About Robert Davidson

For more than fifty years now, Robert Davidson has worked as an artist and produced an internationally acclaimed body of work. His work is found in a number of private and public collections including the National Gallery of Canada in Ottawa; the Vancouver Art Gallery; the Canadian Museum of History in Hull, Quebec; and the Southwest Museum in Los Angeles. His Haida name is Guud Sans Glans which means "Eagle of the Dawn."

Davidson was born November 4, 1946 to a notable family of artists. His great grandfather was the famed Haida artist, Charles Edenshaw (1839 - 1924) whose superb artworks were well known in the Haida community and also collected and displayed in showrooms internationally, during the era before Haida culture was painfully silenced by the government. While he was growing up, tangible culture heritage had virtually disappeared from view in Massett. From an early age, Robert was surrounded by fine carving as both his father, Claude Davidson, and grandfather, Robert Davidson Sr., were respected carvers. Robert began carving at the age of 13 when his father insisted he carry on the family artistic tradition. In 1965, Robert moved to Vancouver to complete his education at Point Grey Secondary School. In 1966, while demonstrating his carving work at Eaton’s in Vancouver, Davidson met the late Bill Reid, who then coached him on sculpture and design for the next eighteen months. Through Reid, he met anthropologist Wilson Duff and artist Bill Holm, and continued to learn about the Haida art. In 1967 he enrolled in the Vancouver School of Art, predecessor to the Emily Carr University of Art and Design, a place he credits for developing his drawing.

He has received many honors for his accomplishments, including: an Inspire Award (formerly, the National Aboriginal Achievement Award) in art and culture, an Order of British Columbia; an Order of Canada, the Governor General’s Award for Visual Arts, the Audain Prize for Lifetime Achievement Award in the Visual Arts, and numerous honorary degrees from universities in Canada and the US. He is a leading figure in the renaissance of Haida art and culture and is a founding member of the Rainbow Creek Dancers with his brother and fellow artist, Reg Davidson. He is also one of the founding members of the Haida Gwaii Singers Society, started by Terri-Lynn Williams-Davidson. He currently lives and works in White Rock, near Vancouver, and Massett, Haida Gwaii.