Martin Davis

Joined Artfinder: Oct. 2013

Artworks for sale: 29

United Kingdom

About Martin Davis

 
 
  • Biography

    I am an ex-firefighter who grew up in Shirebrook in the coalfields of Derbyshire, UK, in an era when that industry was still a going concern. Coming from that background it was the norm for someone like me to view art as something that was only open to other people and to my regret, although I have loved painting since before I can remember,  I never seriously considered it then as a worthwhile career. So I did something else with the first part of my working life and art became my private passion rather than my public persona.

     I graduated in Economics from the University of Birmingham in 1976 and, after a brief spell in finance, I went on to complete over 30 years in the UK fire & rescue service. Although I never really stopped painting I only turned fully to art after my retirement in 2008. Only then, having already brought up a family and completed a demanding & full career, could I find the time I needed to devote to it.

     Artistically I am almost entirely self taught with no formal training beyond school. I still consider myself a student practicing art, and probably I always will. That is not a problem to me because in my own eyes I will never reach that point where I feel “I am now an artist”, but then my art has always been more about the journey than the end product - so I am comfortable with it.

    I consider myself a contemporary artist who paints in a traditionalist manner. My greatest aspiration is to develop a signature style that is recognisably my own. But for some of it to mean something to someone else and to give lasting pleasure would be the ultimate payback.  I am always trying to exhibit more so I can share my work......but it’s not the reason I paint, it never was. Painting for me just calms my soul, it’s my private world. It has to be that way, or it wouldn’t work for me.

    At the moment I don’t have preferred subject matter. Instead my imagination is fired by the unexpected in everyday things, or by a memory, or even by words – particularly poetry. Sometimes just part of a remembered image - perhaps something simple like sunlight playing on a hat brim - can be enough. There is a certain strength or beauty inside everything if you look hard enough – it doesn’t have to be something intrinsically pretty, or attractive or especially worthy of attention. Quite often it is better if it isn’t.

    My work can be seen from time to time in numerous galleries in and around my home county of Derbyshire – and recently in London too - and it continues to attract interest from private collectors around the world.

     I hope you enjoy my work and return often to see how it develops.

     

     

     

  • Links
  • Education

    1973 - 1976

    University of Birmingham, UK

  • Awards

    2012

    National Open Art Competition - shortlisted

    Shortlisted from 000's of submitted artworks.

    Show more awardsHide

    2011

    Saatchi Online Showdown competition - shortlisted

    Saatchi Online artworks selected by popular vote across the globe.

    2010

    National Art of Giving Competition - shortlisted

    Sponsored & hosted by Saatchi Gallery London UK.
  • Upcoming Events

    There are no upcoming events

    Show previous eventsHide previous events

    Previous events

    Event: Still lifes & landscapes

    Dates: Oct. 15, 2016 - Oct. 29, 2016

    Venue: Leabrooks Arts Complex, Somercotes, Alfreton, Derbyshire DE55 4HB

    Exhibition of recent work including some of my still lifes, a recent departure for me.

    Event: Midlands Open Art Exhibition 2016

    Dates: Aug. 20, 2016 - Sept. 17, 2016

    Venue: The Tarpey Gallery, Castle Donnington East Midlands

    Annual exhibition of artwork from emerging contemporary artists living or working in the midlands counties as stated - as selected by the gallery.

    Event: Derbyshire Open Arts festival

    Dates: May 28, 2016 - May 30, 2016

    Venue: Florence Nightingale Hall, Holloway, Derbyshire

    Bank Holiday celebration of the arts at numerous venues across the County including for the first time this one in the village of Holloway. Numerous other artists also represented.

    Event: Looking to the stars

    Dates: April 6, 2016 - April 10, 2016

    Venue: Brick Lane Gallery - The Annexe, 93-95 Sclater Street, london E1 6HR

    The official launch exhibition for The Hornshaw Gallery. Selected works from the gallery's represented artists in a range of genres from realist to abstract, but all contemporary and stylish.

    Event: A Spring Gathering

    Dates: March 4, 2016 - March 30, 2016

    Venue: The Green Man Gallery, Buxton, Derbyshire UK

    A group exhibition to showcase the collective talents of local artists from in and around the Peak District.

    Event: A Spring Gathering

    Dates: March 4, 2016 - March 30, 2016

    Venue: The Green Man Gallery, Buxton, Derbyshire UK

    A group exhibition to showcase the collective talents of local artists from in and around the Peak District.

    Event: Buxton Spa Prize 2015

    Dates: July 17, 2015 - Aug. 31, 2015

    Venue: Green Man Gallery, Hardwick Square South, Buxton, Derbys, UK

    Second annual en plein-air competition in Buxton, UK
    158 artworks featured including my own "Sunlit through trees, Pavilion Gardens"

    Event: Paint it black

    Dates: Feb. 28, 2015 - March 13, 2015

    Venue: Leabrooks Art Gallery, Somercotes, Alfreton, Derbyshire DE55 4HB

    A solo exhibition of a range of works around the theme of dark or strongly contrasting tones.

    Event: Brit Poppy Art Exhibition (WW1 centenary)

    Dates: Aug. 1, 2014 - Aug. 4, 2014

    Venue: Brit Poppy Art Exhibition (WW1 centenary), Pitsford Hall, Pitsford School,Pitsford, Northants

    A national group exhibition, part of the Imperial War Museum national WW1 Centenary Commemoration programme 2014.

    Event: From firefighter to artist

    Dates: April 4, 2014 - May 25, 2014

    Venue: DH Lawrence Heritage Centre, Eastwood, Nottingham NG16 3DZ

    A large solo exhibition featuring work from right across my range of output from the first 6 years of my art practice.

    Event: Smoking Inside

    Dates: Dec. 1, 2013 - Dec. 31, 2013

    Venue: Sara Twomey Gallery, 11 Harbour Exchange, Docklands, E14 9GE, London

    Group exhibition of interiors

    Event: Winter Inspirations

    Dates: Nov. 15, 2013 - Jan. 1, 2014

    Venue: DH Lawrence Heritage Centre, Eastwood, Nottingham NG16 3DZ

    Group exhibition of seasonally inspired artworks by a group of artists called Friends of Studio 61.

Links


Education

1973 - 1976

University of Birmingham, UK


Awards

2012

National Open Art Competition - shortlisted

Shortlisted from 000's of submitted artworks.

Show more awardsHide

2011

Saatchi Online Showdown competition - shortlisted

Saatchi Online artworks selected by popular vote across the globe.

2010

National Art of Giving Competition - shortlisted

Sponsored & hosted by Saatchi Gallery London UK.

There are no upcoming events

Show previous eventsHide previous events

Previous events

Event: Still lifes & landscapes

Dates: Oct. 15, 2016 - Oct. 29, 2016

Venue: Leabrooks Arts Complex, Somercotes, Alfreton, Derbyshire DE55 4HB

Exhibition of recent work including some of my still lifes, a recent departure for me.

Event: Midlands Open Art Exhibition 2016

Dates: Aug. 20, 2016 - Sept. 17, 2016

Venue: The Tarpey Gallery, Castle Donnington East Midlands

Annual exhibition of artwork from emerging contemporary artists living or working in the midlands counties as stated - as selected by the gallery.

Event: Derbyshire Open Arts festival

Dates: May 28, 2016 - May 30, 2016

Venue: Florence Nightingale Hall, Holloway, Derbyshire

Bank Holiday celebration of the arts at numerous venues across the County including for the first time this one in the village of Holloway. Numerous other artists also represented.

Event: Looking to the stars

Dates: April 6, 2016 - April 10, 2016

Venue: Brick Lane Gallery - The Annexe, 93-95 Sclater Street, london E1 6HR

The official launch exhibition for The Hornshaw Gallery. Selected works from the gallery's represented artists in a range of genres from realist to abstract, but all contemporary and stylish.

Event: A Spring Gathering

Dates: March 4, 2016 - March 30, 2016

Venue: The Green Man Gallery, Buxton, Derbyshire UK

A group exhibition to showcase the collective talents of local artists from in and around the Peak District.

Event: A Spring Gathering

Dates: March 4, 2016 - March 30, 2016

Venue: The Green Man Gallery, Buxton, Derbyshire UK

A group exhibition to showcase the collective talents of local artists from in and around the Peak District.

Event: Buxton Spa Prize 2015

Dates: July 17, 2015 - Aug. 31, 2015

Venue: Green Man Gallery, Hardwick Square South, Buxton, Derbys, UK

Second annual en plein-air competition in Buxton, UK
158 artworks featured including my own "Sunlit through trees, Pavilion Gardens"

Event: Paint it black

Dates: Feb. 28, 2015 - March 13, 2015

Venue: Leabrooks Art Gallery, Somercotes, Alfreton, Derbyshire DE55 4HB

A solo exhibition of a range of works around the theme of dark or strongly contrasting tones.

Event: Brit Poppy Art Exhibition (WW1 centenary)

Dates: Aug. 1, 2014 - Aug. 4, 2014

Venue: Brit Poppy Art Exhibition (WW1 centenary), Pitsford Hall, Pitsford School,Pitsford, Northants

A national group exhibition, part of the Imperial War Museum national WW1 Centenary Commemoration programme 2014.

Event: From firefighter to artist

Dates: April 4, 2014 - May 25, 2014

Venue: DH Lawrence Heritage Centre, Eastwood, Nottingham NG16 3DZ

A large solo exhibition featuring work from right across my range of output from the first 6 years of my art practice.

Event: Smoking Inside

Dates: Dec. 1, 2013 - Dec. 31, 2013

Venue: Sara Twomey Gallery, 11 Harbour Exchange, Docklands, E14 9GE, London

Group exhibition of interiors

Event: Winter Inspirations

Dates: Nov. 15, 2013 - Jan. 1, 2014

Venue: DH Lawrence Heritage Centre, Eastwood, Nottingham NG16 3DZ

Group exhibition of seasonally inspired artworks by a group of artists called Friends of Studio 61.


 

Biography

I am an ex-firefighter who grew up in Shirebrook in the coalfields of Derbyshire, UK, in an era when that industry was still a going concern. Coming from that background it was the norm for someone like me to view art as something that was only open to other people and to my regret, although I have loved painting since before I can remember,  I never seriously considered it then as a worthwhile career. So I did something else with the first part of my working life and art became my private passion rather than my public persona.

 I graduated in Economics from the University of Birmingham in 1976 and, after a brief spell in finance, I went on to complete over 30 years in the UK fire & rescue service. Although I never really stopped painting I only turned fully to art after my retirement in 2008. Only then, having already brought up a family and completed a demanding & full career, could I find the time I needed to devote to it.

 Artistically I am almost entirely self taught with no formal training beyond school. I still consider myself a student practicing art, and probably I always will. That is not a problem to me because in my own eyes I will never reach that point where I feel “I am now an artist”, but then my art has always been more about the journey than the end product - so I am comfortable with it.

I consider myself a contemporary artist who paints in a traditionalist manner. My greatest aspiration is to develop a signature style that is recognisably my own. But for some of it to mean something to someone else and to give lasting pleasure would be the ultimate payback.  I am always trying to exhibit more so I can share my work......but it’s not the reason I paint, it never was. Painting for me just calms my soul, it’s my private world. It has to be that way, or it wouldn’t work for me.

At the moment I don’t have preferred subject matter. Instead my imagination is fired by the unexpected in everyday things, or by a memory, or even by words – particularly poetry. Sometimes just part of a remembered image - perhaps something simple like sunlight playing on a hat brim - can be enough. There is a certain strength or beauty inside everything if you look hard enough – it doesn’t have to be something intrinsically pretty, or attractive or especially worthy of attention. Quite often it is better if it isn’t.

My work can be seen from time to time in numerous galleries in and around my home county of Derbyshire – and recently in London too - and it continues to attract interest from private collectors around the world.

 I hope you enjoy my work and return often to see how it develops.

 

 

 

 
 
 
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