Joshua Davis is a New York City based artist, designer, and technologist. Davis is renowned for pioneering an original method of computational, generative-art known as Dynamic Abstraction. He uses computer generated patterns of hand-drawn elements with a the end goal to suspend chaos in a state of harmony. He has exhibited work at international institutions including: the Tate Modern, the Design Museum, MoMA PS1 and Guggenheim Bilbao. He has also collaborated with BMW, Nike, Barneys New York, Puff Daddy and HBO among others.
Q&A With Joshua Davis
What came first for you, technology or art? What made you decide to mix art with design and technology?
Art came first; technology came a lot later. It really gives me the ability to be a designer, a programmer and a critic, all as part of my process.
What are your inspirations for your art?
Mostly history, nature, and foreign cultures, and often a combination of all three. But also from my garden. I pull a lot of colors from my garden. What really interests me is reinterpreting things that have happened in the past - but changing the medium. For example, in the sakroots artist circle “flower power” print most of my inspiration came from Japanese kimonos - embroidery, silk, floral patterns, that kind of thing.
Describe your artistic process.
It starts with a seed idea - be that a kimono, a Balinese mural, an antique map, or even the jellyfish at the Coney Island aquarium. I take that idea and then I refine it, and I refine it, and I keep refining it until I feel happy. Then I experiment, experiment, experiment, until I get to a place of harmony. My process is inherently chaotic. Once I start playing with the code, I really don’t know what is going to come out on the other end. That is why my work is often referred to as a “beautiful accident”. So my goal, with all the chaos, is to suspend that chaos into a state of harmony.