Sculpture with the Freshness of Drawing: Artist David Bates in conversation with Curator Jed Morse

This conversation between artist David Bates and Nasher Sculpture Center Curator Jed Morse commemorates the joint retrospective exhibition of Bates’ sculpture and works on paper at the Nasher Sculpture Center, and his painting at the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth. The first collaboration between the two museums, this exhibition was organized by Jeremy Strick, Director of the Nasher, and Dr. Marla Price, Director of the Modern.

In a career spanning more than 40 years, David Bates has combined exquisite technique with a deep understanding of American modernist traditions, resulting in a body of work that is at once sophisticated, soulful and accessible. Long hailed as an extraordinary painter, Bates’s achievements in sculpture have been equally significant. Carved, assembled, modeled, or cast, painted or patinated, Bates’s sculpture ranges from rough-hewn to smoothly formed, powerfully muscular to fragile and dainty. Following in the footsteps of the great painter-sculptors Henri Matisse and Pablo Picasso, Bates’s work in sculpture has expanded his expressive range and had a profound impact on his work in other media.
David Bates was born in 1952 in Dallas Texas, where he lives and works today. He studies art at Southern Methodist University and participated in the Independent Study Program sponsored by the Whitney Museum of American Art in New York, where he experimented with a wide range of styles. He has been the focus of many solo museum and gallery exhibitions and participated in numerous group exhibitions across the United States. His work is prominently collected by museums and individuals including The Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Museum of Modern Art, and Whitney Museum of American Art, New York, San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, The Museum of Fine Art, Houston, the Dallas Museum of Art, and the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth.

The Nasher Sculpture Center’s ongoing 360 Speaker Series features conversations and lectures on the ever-expanding definition of sculpture. Guests are invited to witness first-hand accounts of the inspiration behind some of the world’s most innovative artwork, architecture, and design.