The Town & the City
Daniel Burns, David Leonard & Christopher St. Leger
Austin, TX - The Davis Gallery is pleased to present three distinctly different artists who confer, through paint and plane, the modernity and complexity of living in an ever-evolving city. Leonard expertly captures the spoils of human engineering and innovation with a focus on the juxtaposition of the natural with the fabricated. Burns plays with texture and color to encompass a city's vitality, motion and heartbeat - giving us a sense that the streets give off a rhythm, a pulse. And St. Leger expresses the everyday in extraordinary gestures, deftly creating ethereal scenes of our own modest and monumental environments. All three artists focus on how the city affects our psyche; how we as individuals form our own metropolis, our ideal utopia, along with the collective gray-haze of the spaces we call home.
As the language I speak best in, painting is my way of articulating, and sharing, the experience of living. The people, places and things I encounter on a daily basis are the inspiration for my work; the experience of being in a given place at a given time, of paying attention to momentary nuances and changes - now the sun shifts, the wind rises and shadows lengthen, colors deepen - is at the heart of what I do and why I do it.
The primary subjects of my paintings are 21st century man's working monuments, which represent our culture's dedication to production and consumption. The essence of our way of life can been seen in our never-ending attempt to subdue our environment. It is not my intention to either glorify or to condemn this objective, but to invite contemplation and leave judgment up to the viewer. I'm always looking for places where the man-made environment inundates the natural. I paint this in a way where subtle abstraction dis-associates elements from the environment, creating an oscillating view of the natural and the fabricated.
Christopher St. Leger
I look at buildings, and I look to buildings. Inside and around each of them dwells a utopian spirit. A spirit of economy, order, democracy, triumph, et cetera. I look for this spirit, built from nothing if not hope, in the building that must inevitably sit in a greater environment. With watercolor I simulate the life of what is built amid the distress by its environment. For me watercolor is a richly animating method of honing what is sublime.