The Mountain Impressionism of Meads Davenport

RR1 Box 256 / Pilot 24138 / Phone: 1 [540] 651-6624

New River Arts Council Floyd County Artisan's Index


If you have ever lain on your back on a summery meadow looking into the clouds to find animals, you have an immediate insight into the kind of enjoyment F Meads Davenport's paintings evoke.

Left, Hillside, acrylic on masonite, 12 x 9".

For all practical purposes, Meads gave up painting thirty years ago, to devote his time to his welding job in Roanoke and to spend time with his dogs and cattle on his place nestled at the end of a scenic valley in Floyd County. People weren't buying the kind of works he liked to paint.

One series of interiors features impressions of people he saw every day during his highest period of activity. When he hung up his brush, they froze the gestures and dress styles of the time into perpetual stop motion. This young couple was caught walking across a snowy quadrangle.

Right, Harvard Yard, acrylic on canvas, 12 x 16".

His paintings represent a fresh and original direction for American impressionism. While their muted tones reflect the bucolic influence of American romantic pastoral paintings from the turn of the century, their execution is nothing but modern.

Left, Snow Melt, acrylic on masonite, 12 x 9".

The squiggles on canvas you see at close range constitute only the starting point for these paintings. They are predominantly the joyful work your mind exerts in transforming these tableaux into very literal images as you step back beyond the threshold of perceptive literalism.

Right, Calm Sea, acrylic on masonite, 10 x 12".

To a large extent, the interpretive processing one's mind performs in looking at a highly compressed JPEG image is the same as the creative act of interpreting a painting, so these images here have lost much of their impressionist essence in the translation to your monitor. Note that the joyful grimace on the face of this guitarist, as he bends a note during a performance, resolves at close range into paint blotches resembling nothing more than a Rorschach test.

We will be presenting a rotating gallery here as time and space allow.

Left, The Bent Note, acrylic on canvas, 12 x 16".


Last updated 970609 by Alex Funk DESIGN