Randall Davey

Artist Biography

Born in East Orange, New Jersey, Randall Davey is best known for his portraits and racetrack scenes. Davey first studied architecture at Cornell University per his father’s wishes, but dropped out to study painting with Robert Henri (1865–1929) and Charles W. Hawthorne (1872–1930) at the New York School of Art, and then continued with Henri even after he stopped teaching there. At the time, Davey’s contemporaries included artists such as George Bellows (1882–1925) and Stuart Davis (1892–1964). According to John Sloan (1871–1951), “Davey came to Henri at the age of twenty-two, in 1909; and he found his teacher…[For Davey, Henri was] a kind of Christ, in his way.” Davey toured Europe with Henri, visiting France, the Netherlands, and Spain. Davey frequently summered on the New England coast, where he painted fishing and harbor life. Around 1918, he worked for a year in Cuba. Davey traveled with John Sloan to New Mexico in 1919, becoming an early member of the art colony, and eventually took up permanent residence there. From 1920 onward, he held teaching positions at the Art Institute of Chicago, Kansas City Art Institute, Broadmoor Art Academy, and University of New Mexico. Davey exhibited at the group exhibition of Independent Artists in 1910; his work was also exhibited at the 1913 Armory Show, Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts (1913–49), National Academy of Design (1914–50, with a prize in 1915), The Art Institute of Chicago, Whitney Museum of American Art, Grand Central Art Galleries, and others. His work is included in the collections of the Whitney Museum of American Art, The Art Institute of Chicago, Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, Smithsonian Institution, New Mexico Museum of Art, and Detroit Institute of Arts, among others.

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