Scottish artist Alan Davie dies at age 93
Tuesday, April 8, 2014
The death of Scottish was announced on Sunday. Davie, 93, was known for his colourful abstract .
|It's an urge, an intensity, a kind of sexual need|
—Alan Davies on art
His father was a teacher who dabbled in art and his mother's family was musically inclined. Upon seeingperforming in a music shop in Edinburgh, Davie borrowed 600 from his father to buy himself a saxophone. After serving in the , at which time he wrote much poetry later transcribed by his father, Davie toured with Scottish jazz bands.
Davie's work was admired by the likes of graffiti, and ' '. His final interview before death, with , gave an insight into how he viewed art: "It's an urge, an intensity, a kind of sexual need[...] something I do from an inner compulsion, that has to come out.", and . Davie himself collected non-Western art and liked tattoos,
He initially avoided painting as a career at all, then spent several years earning money by other means whilst his paintings failed to sell. His exhibitions in the late 1950s, however, were highly successful and launched his career. He was in the habit of choosing titles for his art only after completion.
Despite a strong presence owing to his lengthy red beard and off-beat humour, he was shy; his international fame waned. Recent years have seen a revival of interest with price increases for his early art. London alone is host to three exhibitions this month including at .
Tate Britain calls Davie "one of the first British artists after the war to develop an expressive form of abstraction" producing "kaleidoscopic canvases[...] that the artist relates to his love of jazz".