About Martin Davis
National Open Art Competition - shortlisted
There are no upcoming events
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.