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b. 1945, United Kingdom

David Nash Biography

British artist David Nash joyfully embraces the ongoing life and entropy of organic objects. The sculptures for which he is best know are made mostly from wood that has fallen naturally or been felled for practical reasons (age, safety, et cetera). After utilising air, fire, and water to alter the wood, the final works often remain in a state of flux, stretching and cracking as the aging process continues.

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David Nash studied at Kingston College of Art and Chelsea School of Art, London. He has travelled extensively throughout his life, first experimenting with his signature wood-charring style during a stay in Japan in the early 1980s. This charring technique blackens the surface of the wood and is utilised in pieces such as Scale Column (1999) to create works with a range of tones akin to charcoal on paper.

Many of David Nash's most famous works are ongoing as they continue to grow or decay. Wooden Boulder (1978—ongoing) is a rough sphere about three feet wide and made out of a 200-year-old oak tree. Nash has tracked, lost, rediscovered, and occasionally intervened in the boulder's path in the wild for more than 35 years.

In addition to his extensive sculptural practice, David Nash has a significant drawing practice, generally consisting of geometric abstractions executed in stencils or pastel on paper. Often more colourful than most of his sculptures, these drawings nevertheless echo his three-dimensional forms, with the stacked shapes of Yellow Stack (pastel stencil on paper; 2016), for example, recalling the stacked shapes of Blue Column (bronze, blue patina; 2018).

David Nash has been exhibited at prestigious galleries and institutions world-wide, including Galerie Lelong & Co., Paris (2016); Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park, Grand Rapids (2014); Yorkshire Sculpture Park (2010); and Kunsthalle Mannheim (2009). His work is held in significant collections including The Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York; Victoria & Albert Museum, London; and The Museum of Contemporary Art, Los Angeles.

David Nash was elected to the Royal Academy of Arts in 1999. In the same year he was appointed a research fellow at Northumbria University, Newcastle upon Tyne, and received an Honorary Doctorate from Kingston University London. He received an OBE in 2004 and lives and works in Blaenau Ffestiniog in North Wales.

Recent show include Galerie Lelong, Paris, 2014; Domaine de Chaumont-sur-Loire, 2013; Royal Botanic Garden, Kew, United Kingdom, 2013; Galerie Lelong, Paris, 2012; Galerie Lelong, Zurich, Switzerland, 2012; Parc de sculptures du Yorkshire, Wakefield, 2012; Royal academy, London, 2010; and Abbot hall art gallery, Cumbria, 2009.

Nash was elected a Royal Academician in 1999, the same year in which he was appointed a Research Fellow, University of Northumbria, Newcastle and was awarded an Honorary Doctorate in Art & Design by Kingston University. He lives and works in North Wales.

Biography by Casey Carsel | Ocula | 2020

David Nash Featured Artworks

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Tree in May by David Nash contemporary artwork
David NashTree in May, 2019Pastel on paper
76 x 57 cm
Galerie Lelong & Co. Paris Contact Gallery
Group of Sculptures for an Exhibition by David Nash contemporary artwork
David NashGroup of Sculptures for an Exhibition, 1989Charcoal on paper
164 x 131 cm
Galerie Lelong & Co. Paris Contact Gallery
Wooden Boulder by David Nash contemporary artwork
David NashWooden Boulder, 2015Charcoal on paper
56 x 76 cm
Galerie Lelong & Co. Paris Contact Gallery
Gorse by David Nash contemporary artwork
David NashGorse, 2020Pigment on paper
57 x 76 cm
Galerie Lelong & Co. Paris Contact Gallery
Gorse by David Nash contemporary artwork
David NashGorse, 2020Pigment on paper
76 x 57 cm
Galerie Lelong & Co. Paris Contact Gallery
Hood by David Nash contemporary artwork
David NashHood, 2017Part charred oak
33 x 19 x 16 cm
Galerie Lelong & Co. Paris Contact Gallery
Column by David Nash contemporary artwork
David NashColumn, 2015Pastel and charcoal on paper
67 x 51 cm
Galerie Lelong & Co. Paris Contact Gallery
Stick Chair by David Nash contemporary artwork
David NashStick Chair, 2008Bronze
61 x 40 x 37 cm
Galerie Lelong & Co. Paris Contact Gallery

David Nash Recent Exhibitions

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Contemporary art exhibition, David Nash, Red, Black & Blue at Galerie Lelong & Co. Paris, 38 Avenue Matignon, Paris
Closed
23 January–7 March 2020 David Nash Red, Black & Blue Galerie Lelong & Co. Paris38 Avenue Matignon, Paris
Contemporary art exhibition, David Nash, Trees at Galerie Lelong & Co. Paris, 13 Rue de Téhéran, Paris
Closed
5 September–5 October 2019 David Nash Trees Galerie Lelong & Co. Paris13 Rue de Téhéran, Paris
Contemporary art exhibition, David Nash, Columns at Galerie Lelong & Co. Paris, 13 Rue de Téhéran, Paris
Closed
25 May–13 July 2018 David Nash Columns Galerie Lelong & Co. Paris13 Rue de Téhéran, Paris

David Nash Represented By

David Nash In Related Press

‘Wood suits me, I’m a Saxon!’ – an interview with David Nash Related Press ‘Wood suits me, I’m a Saxon!’ – an interview with David Nash 3 August 2019, Apollo

'Making art outside,' David Nash explains, 'is completely different from working inside.' He looks around the East Sussex drawing studio in which we are talking, and adds: 'In here we've got four walls, a flat floor and ceiling. We've neutralised the elemental forces. As soon as you go out there, you are dealing with slopes, wind, air, rain. You...

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