John Davies

John Davies was born in Cheshire in 1946. He studied painting at Hull and Manchester Colleges of Art 1963-67, followed by two years at the Slade School of Art. He was subsequently awarded a sculpture fellowship at Gloucester College of Art. He lives lives and works in Kent and London.

1970Sainsbury Award
1980Artists’ Camp at Kasauli, North India
1995Jack Goldhill Award for Sculpture, Royal Academy of Arts, London
1999National Portrait Gallery Commission for portrait of Lord Foster
2003Deutsche Gewerkschaftsbund Commission for portrait of Hans Böcker

One-Man Exhibitions

1972Whitechapel Art Gallery, London
1975Whitechapel Art Gallery, London
1980Marlborough Fine Art, London
1981-82Kunstverein, Hamburg; Wilhelm-Lehmbruck Museum, Duisburg; Badischer Kunstverein, Karlsruhe
1983Ferens Art Gallery, Hull
1984Marlborough Fine Art, London
1985Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts, University of East Anglia, Norwich
1987Prema, Gloucestershire
1989Marlborough Gallery, New York
1992Marlborough Graphics, London
1993Marlborough Fine Art, London
1995Centro de Arte Palacio Almundi, Murcia
1996Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester
1997Marlborough Fine Art, London
1998Purdy Hicks Gallery, London
1999University Gallery, Newcastle-upon-Tyne
 Plymouth Arts Centre
2002Marlborough Graphics, London
2004Marlborough Fine Art, London
2004-05Museo de Bellas Artes de Bilbao; Institut Valencià d’Art Modern, Valencia
2005Marlborough Galería, Madrid
 Institut Valencià d’Art Modern, Valencia
2006Marlborough Graphics (10 May-3 June)
 Arte Giani, Frankfurt (31 May-30 June)
 Galeria Marta Traba, Fundação memorial da América Latina, São Paulo
2007Museu de Arte Contemporânea do Dragão do Mar, Fortaleza, Brazil
 Castell de Santa Bàrbara, Alicante
 Galerie Giani-Leber, Frankfurt
2009-10Marlborough, Barcelona
2012 Home Sweet Home, Marlborough Barcelona
2017My Ghosts, Turner Contemporary, Margate

Group Exhibitions

19738e Biennale de Paris
197412 Views of Mankind, MacRobert Centre, University of Stirling, Scotland
 Critic’s Choice, selected by Marina Vaizey, Arthur Tooth and Sons, London
 For the Last Time, Sammlung Ludwig, Neue Galerie, Aachen
 British Sculptors Attitudes to Drawing, Sunderland Arts Centre
1975British Exhibition, Art 6 ’75, Schweitzer Mustermesse, Basel
 Body and Soul, Peter Moores Project 3, Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool
1975-76Museum of Drawers, Solothurn Museum, Switzerland ICC, Antwerp
 Boymans-van-Beuningen Museum, Rotterdam
 Israel Museum, Jerusalem
1976Gallery Choice, Edinburgh and Glasgow
 International Event 1972-1976, Venice Biennale
 Drawings of People, Serpentine Gallery, London
1977Documenta VI, Kassel
 Real Life, Peter Moores Project 4, Liverpool
19784th Indian Triennale, New Delhi
1979Europaische Realistische Plastik, Kunsthalle, Bremen
 3rd Biennale of Sydney, Art Gallery of New South Wales
1980The Human Factor: Sculpture made by 10 artists during the 70s, Arts Council Collection touring exhibition
1981Bienal de Arte, Medellin, Colombia
 Szenen der Volkskunst, Württembergischer Kunstverein, Stuttgart
 Drawings and Watercolours by 13 British Artists, Marlborough Fine Art, London
1981-82British Sculpture in the 20th Century, Whitechapel Art Gallery, London
1982Aspects of British Art Today, (British Council) Tokyo Metropolitan Museum of Fine Art and touring exhibition
1984The British Show, Art Gallery of New South Wales and touring exhibition
 The Hard-Won Image, Tate Gallery, London
 From the Figure, Ikon Gallery, Birmingham
 Sculptors’ Drawings, British Council touring exhibition
 Masterpieces of Modern Sculpture, Marlborough Gallery, New York
1985A Singular Vision, Paintings of the Figure by Contemporary British Artists, Arts Council touring exhibition
 Human Interest, Fifty Years of British Art About People, Cornerhouse,
1986-87The Foundation Veranneman Invites Marlborough, Foundation Veranneman, Kruishouten, Belgium
1987-88Viewpoint, Koninklijke Musea voor Schone Kunsten van Belgie, The British Council, Belgium
1988The Face, The Arkansas Art Centre, Arkansas
 Introducing with Pleasure, Gardner Art Centre, and Arts Council tour
 Works on Paper by Contemporary Artists, Marlborough Fine Art, London
1988-89100 Years of Art in Britain, Leeds City Art Gallery
1995Kent Artists, Canterbury City Art Gallery
 Altars, Canterbury Festival
 Tendances de la Sculpture Contemporaine Figurative, Musée de Cambrai
1997Bodyworks, Kettle’s Yard, Cambridge
 Sculpture Park Goodwood
 Cheltenham Art Fellows, Cheltenham Art Gallery and Museum
 Surrealism and After, The Gabrielle Keiller Collection, Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Edinburgh
 Drawings, Purdy Hicks Gallery, London
 Claude Bernard Gallery, Paris
 Pallant House Gallery, Chichester
1999Den Haag Sculptuur, Holland
2000Elogio de lo Visible, Galería Marlborough, Madrid, travelling to: Centro Cultural Las Claras, Murcia; Centro Cultural Casa del Cordon, Burgos; Cultural Rioja, Logroňo
2000Le Brun, Campbell, Oulton, Davies, Raab Galerie, Berlin
 Conversation – an exhibition of figurative sculpture, Milton Keynes Gallery
2002Contemporary British Sculpture from Goodwood, Peggy Guggenheim Collection, Venice
 As it Seems, Cheltenham Art Gallery & Museum (drawing exhibition curated by Roy Oxlade and Paul McKee)
2002-03Les Jeux dans l’Art du XXème Siècle, Le Bellevue, Biarritz; Palacio de Montemuzo, La Lonja, Zaragoza
2003Taktiken des Ego, Wilhelm-Lehmbruck Museum, Duisburg
2004European Triennial of Small Scale Sculpture: Renaissance of the Statuette, Gallery of Murska Sobota, Slovenia
2005Tate Sculpture: The Human Figure in British Art From Moore to Gormley, Millenium Galleries, Sheffield
 Dialog Skulptur – Table and Chair, Drawings and Sculptures from the Deutsche Bank Collection, Galerie Kunstforum, Seligenstadt
 Escultura y Paisaje, Fundación ASTROC, Castillo de Bendinat de Calvià, Palma, Mallorca (4 Aug.-16 Oct.)
2006Important Mischief: British Sculpture from the 1960s and 70s,
Henry Moore Institute, Leeds
 A Summer Exhibition, Marlborough Graphics, London
2007Gli Amici Pittori di Londra, Galleria Ceribelli, Bergamo
2008British Surrealism & Other Realities: The Sherwin Collection, Museum of Modern Art (Mima), Middlesbrough
 Galerie Giani-Leber, Frankfurt
 One Way, One Ticket, Institut Valencià d’Art Modern, Valencia
2009British Surrealism in Context – A Collector’s Eye, Leeds Art Gallery
 Frieze, Annely Juda Fine Art, London
 This is Sculpture, Tate Liverpool
2009-10Winter Journey, Art Space Gallery, London
2010Works from the Tate Collection, Tate St Ives
 Works on Paper in the IVAM Collection, selected by Barbara Rose,
Institut Valencià d’Art Modern, Valencia
2011A Life in Art: Monika Kinley, Plymouth Arts Centre
 Beyond The Human Clay, James Hyman Fine Art, London
 Obras Maestras del Siglo XX en la Colección del IVAM, Moscow Museum of Modern Art
 Accrochage de Groupe, Galerie Claude Bernard, Paris
 Summer Show, Marlborough Barcelona
 Biennale of Ushuaia, Argentina
 United Enemies: The Problem of Sculpture in Britain in the 1960s and 1970s, Henry Moore Institute, Leeds
2013Ego Yo Yo Mío Mío – Critic’s Choice, Juan Bufill, Marlborough Barcelona
 Ut picture poesis. Correspondencias y Complicidades, Institut Valencià d’Art Modern, Valencia
 Artists Make Faces, Plymouth City Museum and Art Gallery, curated by Monika Kinley
2014British Surrealism Unlocked, Abbot Hall Art Gallery, Kendal
2015A Summer Exhibition, Marlborough Fine Art, London
 Sculptures, Galerie Claude Bernard, Paris
 Self, Turner Contemporary, Margate
2016The Ingram Collection at the RGCP, Royal College of General Practitioners, London
 Night in the Museum: Ryan Gander Curates the Arts Council Collection, Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery
 Hyperrealist Sculpture 1973-2016, Museo de Bellas Artes de Bilbao
2017Gys! Er den levende? Museum for Moderne Kunst, Arken
 Skin, Ferens Art Gallery, Hull
 Summer Exhibition, Marlborough Fine Art, London (2 August-3 September 2017)
 Carved, Cast, Constructed, British Sculpture 1951-1991, Stand C8 Frieze Masters, Regent’s Park (5-8 October 2017); Marlborough Fine Art, London (25 October-25 November 2017)
 Modern and Contemporary Art II, Galería Marlborough, Barcelona (14 December 2017-5 January 2018)
2018Journeys with The Waste Land, Turner Contemporary, Margate (3 February-7 May 2018)
2019Facing Out, Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester (22 February-2 June 2019)
Royal Academy Summer Exhibition, Invited artist (10 June-12 August 2019)
2020ABC: The Alphabet of the Bilbao Museum, Museo de Bellas Artes de Bilbao (6 October 2018-6 January 2020)
2021Unkempt, Messums, Wiltshire (16 July-12 September 2021)
2022The Turner Contemporary Open, Turner Contemporary, Margate (23 October 2021-20 February 2022
Step and Stair, Art Space Gallery, London (3 December 2021-20 January 2022)
Treasures from the Stores, York Art Gallery, York (19 November 2022 –
2023Revealing the Human Form: Sculpture From Leading British Artists, Banbury Museum and Gallery, Banbury, Oxfordshire (1 April-2 July 2023)
Revealing the Human Form: Sculpture From Leading British Artists, The Burton Museum, Bideford, Devon (16 July-5 September 2023)
Spirit of Adventure – 40 Key Objects from the Ingram Collection, West Horsley Place, Leatherhead, Surrey (12 August-24 September 2023)
2024An endlessly smooth common continuum – Institut Valencià d’Art Modern (IVAM), Valencia (16 May-20 October 2024)


1972Marina Vaizey, ‘John Davies’, Arts Review, vol. 24, No. 14
 Robert Melville, ‘The Human Condition’, Architectural Review, Vol. 152, No. 907
 Jasia Reichardt, ‘John Davies’, Architectural Design, Vol. XLII, No. 11
1974William Ferguson, ‘Sculptural Progression’, Times Educational Supplement, 15 April
1975Paul Overy, The Times, 25 November
1976Catherine Lampert, Studio International, January-February
 Fenella Crichton, Studio International, February-March
1977Hilary Chapman, ‘New British Sculpture’, Arts Review, January
 Stern Magazine, June, pp. 33-35
 Edward Lucie-Smith, Art Today, Phaidon
1979‘John Davies New Drawings’, London Magazine, December-January 1980
1980John Russell-Taylor, ‘Sculptor’s Drawings With a Life of Their Own’, The Times, 24 March
 Edward Lucie-Smith, Art in the Seventies, Phaidon
 John Davies and Nicholas Wadley, Introduction, in John Davies, Recent Sculpture and Drawings, exhibition catalogue, Marlborough Fine Art, London, November-December
1981Nicholas Wadley, ‘The Sculpture of John Davies’, Art International, January -February, Vol. XXIV, No. 5-6, pp. 147-157
 Norbert Lynton, Introduction in John Davies, Werke 1970-1980, exhibition catalogue, Kunstverein in Hamburg, August-September
1982‘John Davies’ Studio’, Studio International, Vol. 195, No. 993/4, pp. 79-85
 Michael Peppiatt and Alice Bellony Rewald, Imagination’s Chamber – Artists and their Studios, Little Brown and Co., Boston, p. 221
 Patrick Kinmouth, ‘Watching and Waiting’, Vogue Magazine, September
1984Heidi Bürklin, ‘John Davies’, Art das Kunstmagazin, May, pp. 111-113
 ‘John Davies Portfolio’, NWT Nieuw Wereldtydschrift, July, pp. 20-25
1985Graham Beal, Introduction, in John Davies Sculptures and Drawings 1968-1984, exhibition catalogue, Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts, University of East Anglia, Norwich, April-June
1987Edward Lucie-Smith, Sculpture Since 1945, Phaidon
1989Norbert Lynton, Introduction in John Davies, exhibition catalogue,
Marlborough Gallery, New York, April
1993Simon Corbin, ‘John Davies’, What’s on in London 7-14 April
1996Michael Simpson, ‘This Life and Others’, Whitworth Art Gallery,
Manchester, exhibition catalogue Still
1997Elizabeth Cowling, Surrealism and After, The Gabrielle Keiller Collection exhibition catalogue, Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Edinburgh
 Michael Harrison, Introduction in Bodyworks, exhibition catalogue,
Kettle’s Yard, University of Cambridge, January-March
2004-5Andrew Dempsey, Timothy Hyman, Javier Viar, Kosme de Barañano, John Davies, in John Davies, Sculptures and drawings since 1968, exhibition catalogue, Museo de Bellas Artes de Bilbao, October 2004-January 2005; Institut Valencià d’Art Modern, March-May 2005
2004J.A. González Carrera, ‘John Davies y el devenir del hombre moderno’, El Correo – Territorios, 13 October
 F.C.S., ‘Más allá del ‘tempo’ moderno, El Pais, 16 October
 Eva Larrauri, ‘Nada es más fascinante que la figura humana’, El Pais,
18 October
 J.A. González Carrera, ‘John Davies y el teatro de vivir’, El Correo, 19
 Eva Larrauri, ‘El escultor John Davies muestra su obsession por la figura Humana en su primera antológica’, El Pais, 19 October
 ‘El BBAA acoge el personal mundo de John Davies’, Gara, 19 October
 Altzol San Sebastian, ‘El escultor de la figura, el alma y el espíritu humano’, El Mundo, 19 October
 Maite Redondo, ‘John Davies El escultor ingles “conversa” con sus figures humanas en la sale BBK del Museo Bilbao’ Deia, 19 October
 Alicia Fernández, ‘John Davies, en cuerpo y alma’, ABC- Blanco y Negro, 30 October
 Jose Javier Fernández, ‘La condición humana’, Diario Vasco, 26 November
 X.Sáenz de Gorbea Zarrabeitia, ‘Inexpresionismo’, Deia, 4 December
2005Victor Zarza, ‘El cuerpo/signo’, Blanco y Negro Cultural, 26 February
 ‘El IVAM exhbibe la mayor retrospective de Europa sobre la escultura ‘visionaria y excéntrica’ del británico John Davies’, Siglo XXI, El Diario Digital, 10 March
 ‘John Davies reinventa la humanidad’, Levante, 11 March
 Rafa Marí, ‘John Davies expone en el IVAM su primera antológica en España’, Diario de Valencia, 11 March
 Marta Moreira, ‘El IVAM descubre la solitaria humanidad del escultor John Davies’, ABC, 11 March
 F.B., ‘John Davies reflectiona sobre la figura humana en sus esculturas’, El País, 11 March
2009Juan Bufill, ‘Primera Muestra de John Davies en Barcelona’, La Vanguardia, 28 November
 Noèlia Hernández, ‘Un mundo extraño’, La Vanguardia, 16 December
 Juan Bufill, ‘Cuatro Cabezas Aislades’, El Dinero, 27 December
2012Josep Lambles, ‘Això no és un espantaocells’, Time Out Barcelona, 15-21 June
 Juan Bufill, ‘La casa del cuerpo’, La Vanguardia, 24 June
 Noélia Hernández, ‘Algo de nosotros mismos’, La Vanguardia, 11 July
 N.M., ‘John Davies’, Arte y Parte, August-September , No. 100
2013Carlos García-Osuna, ‘Plasmando el ego’, La Vanguardia, 8 September
2017Fused, ‘The haunting sculptures of John Davies’,, 27 September
2019Javier Viar, ‘John Davies: el hombre como ceremonia’, Hijos de la Angustia, Editores Muelle de Uribitarte
2021Dr Jon Wood, online catalogue for Step and Stair,
2023Marcus Harvey, ‘MORE JOHN DAVIES PLEASE’, MASS Sculpture Magazine, Issue 2
2024Belinder Dhanoa, Kasauli Art Centre, 1976-1991, Tulika Books, published in association with Sher-Gil Sundaram Arts Foundation, India

Public Collections

Art Gallery of Western Australia, Perth
Arts Council Collection, Hayward Gallery, London
Birmingham Museums and Art Gallery
British Council, London
British Museum, London
Caracas Museum of Contemporary Art
Cecil Higgins Art Gallery, Bedford
Contemporary Art Society, London
Deutsche Gewerkschaftsbund, Berlin
Ferens Art Gallery, Hull City Museums and Gallery
Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge
Fundación Sorigué, Lleida
Harris Museum and Art Gallery, Preston
Ingram Collection at the Lightbox, Woking
Institut Valencià d’Art Modern, Valencia
Leeds Art Gallery, Leeds Museums and Galleries
Museo de Bellas Artes de Bilbao
Museum Beelden aan Zee, The Hague
Museum of Modern Art, Dublin
National Portrait Gallery, London
Pallant House Gallery, Chichester
Queensland Art Gallery, Melbourne
Sainsbury Centre for Visual Arts, University of East Anglia, Norwich
Scottish National Gallery of Modern Art, Edinburgh
Tate Gallery, London
Tokushima Museum, Japan
Ulster Museum, Belfast
University of the Punjab, India
Victoria & Albert Museum, London
Whitworth Art Gallery, University of Manchester
Wigan Art Gallery
Wilhelm-Lehmbruck Museum, Duisburg
Yale Center for British Art, New Haven
York City Art Gallery