Jose Dávila, ‘Untitled’, 2011, TWO x TWO

In this untitled work from 2011, Dávila takes on Josef Albers' Homage to the Square series (1949-1976) wherein Albers explored the complex nature of perception and color interactions. Dávila’s work is made of cut and stacked ceramic tile, posing questions about the hierarchical relationship between paint and ceramics, canvas and tile, and artist and construction worker.

In much of his recent work, Mexican artist Jose Dávila uses ordinary materials to duplicate iconic 20th century works as a means to critique and reflect on the manner in which meaning is attributed to materials. In this untitled work from 2011, Dávila takes on Josef Albers Homage to the Square series (made from 1949-1976) where Albers explored the complex nature of perception and color interactions. Dávila’s work is made of cut and stacked ceramic tile, posing questions about the hierarchical relationship between paint and ceramics, canvas and tile, and artist and construction worker. Dávila’s work has been the subject of solo exhibitions at the MAZ, Zapopán; MARCO Museum of Contemporary Art of Vigo; and the Bloomberg Space and the Camden Arts Centre, both in London. His work is included in public collections such as Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, Madrid; Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo; Inhotim, Brumadinho; and the Phelps Cisneros Collection.

About Jose Dávila

Drawing on his training as an architect, Jose Dávila reflects on the failure of utopian, modernist architectural principles in his assemblages, mixed-media works, photography, and installations. “There is something poetic in failure and in our limitations,” he says, “because we live with a modernism that is not preserved, where we see buildings that have abandoned or demolished and others have been badly remodeled.” Dávila is primarily known for his assemblages—spatial investigations and hybrids of painted wood, found objects, and plastics that resemble maquettes or quasi-functional structures. He is influenced by Donald Judd, Jannis Kounnellis, and Sol LeWitt.

Mexican, b. 1974, Guadalajara, Mexico, based in Guadalajara, Mexico