Wyevale, David Urban, 2014

Urban, David

Wyevale, Wyevale, 2014

mixed media

24 x 18 in. (46 x 61 cm)

Boy Imagining a Monument to the Wyevale Art Society, David Urban, 2006

Urban, David

Wyevale, Boy Imagining a Monument to the Wyevale Art Society, 2006

oil on canvas

6 x 15 ft. (1.8 x 4.6 m)

Lafontaine Beach Recognition Debris, David Urban, 2006

Urban, David

Wyevale, Lafontaine Beach Recognition Debris, 2006

oil on canvas

6 x 15 ft. (1.8 x 4.6 m)

Wyevale Phonics #1, David Urban, 2006

Urban, David

Wyevale, Wyevale Phonics #1, 2006

oil on canvas

2 x 5 ft. (0.6 x 1.5 m)

Wyevale Phonics #2, David Urban, 2006

Urban, David

Wyevale, Wyevale Phonics #2, 2006

oil on canvas

30 x 24 in. (76 x 61 cm)

Wyevale Phonics Study #7, David Urban, 2013

Urban, David

Wyevale, Wyevale Phonics Study #7, 2013

oil on canvas

20 x 16 in. (51 x 41 cm)

Wyevale Phonics #3, David Urban, 2006

Urban, David

Wyevale, Wyevale Phonics #3, 2006

oil on canvas

24 x 30 in. (61 x 76 cm)

A Fallen Tree in the Woods of Wyevale, David Urban, 2006

Urban, David

Wyevale, A Fallen Tree in the Woods of Wyevale, 2006

oil on canvas

6 x 10 ft. (1.8 x 3 m)

In the Plain Sense of Things, David Urban, 2006

Urban, David

Wyevale, In the Plain Sense of Things, 2006

oil on canvas

5 x 4 ft. (1.5 x 1.2 m)

Towards the United Church of Wyvale, David Urban, 2006

Urban, David

Wyevale, Towards the United Church of Wyvale, 2006

oil on canvas

6 x 5 ft. (1.8 x 1.5 m)

Offerary, David Urban, 2006

Urban, David

Wyevale, Offerary, 2006

acrylic on canvas

5 x 4 ft. (1.5 x 1.2 m)

Discovery of the Sunflower in Space, David Urban, 2006

Urban, David

Wyevale, Discovery of the Sunflower in Space, 2006

oil on canvas

6 x 5 ft. (1.8 x 1.5 m)

Crying Form, David Urban, 2006

Urban, David

Wyevale, Crying Form, 2006

oil on canvas

6 x 5 ft. (1.8 x 1.5 m)

Wyevale Gate, David Urban, 2013

Urban, David

Wyevale, Wyevale Gate, 2013

oil on linen

14 x 11 in. (36 x 28 cm)

Wyevale Phonics #1, David Urban, 2013

Urban, David

Wyevale, Wyevale Phonics #1, 2013

oil on linen

12 x 9 in. (30 x 23 cm)

Wyevale Phonics #2, David Urban, 2006

Urban, David

Wyevale Phonics #2, 2013

oil on linen

12 x 9 in. (30 x 23 cm)

Wyevale Phonics #3, David Urban, 2006

Urban, David

Wyevale Phonics #3, 2013

oil on linen

12 x 9 in. (30 x 23 cm)

Wyevale Phonics #4, David Urban, 2006

Urban, David

Wyevale Phonics #4, 2013

oil on linen

12 x 9 in. (30 x 23 cm)

Wyevale Phonics #5, David Urban, 2006

Urban, David

Wyevale Phonics #5, 2013

oil on linen

12 x 9 in. (30 x 23 cm)

Wyevale, 2006

 

In his body of work Wyevale, David Urban presents large abstract oil paintings and their relationship to representational traditions of painting. The creative layering of paint becomes a distinctive feature in Urban’s artistic process; carefully controlled elements are juxtaposed with energetic, passionate strokes. 

 

For Urban, Wyevale represents a real place and an existential place. Urban has been driving through the town of Wyevale on the way to his cottage for decades. He went there as a young boy, and as an adult, he and his wife experience taking their own son to what Urban calls their place in the woods. The work is about his family’s relationship to this place as time passes, as it remains the same but he and his family change. The tension in these works is created by the space between happiness and sadness; reality and existentiality; youth and adulthood. One gets the feeling that Urban is trying to preserve the innocence of childhood in these Wyevale works. 
 


Urban’s works explore the interplay between representation and abstraction while maintaining a strong sense of connectivity and rhythmical structure. Dr. David Moos, former Curator of Contemporary Art, Art Gallery of Ontario, writes that Urban’s “interlocking networks take the viewer on imaginary trips through painted space, fictive depth and chromatic horizons.” The stability of the emerging figurative forms preserves the tension and monumentality found within the works.

 

The work of David Urban is defined by bold collisions of line and shape, clashing tones, and kinetic brushstrokes. His dynamic paintings are built layer upon layer, incorporating the traditions of still life and landscape, abstraction and realism. His practice studies the physical presence of sound, with a strong sense of connectivity and rhythmical structure. Urban's rhythmic geometries conjure up networks of boards, beams, or girders that in combination with his gestural forms pursue an endless investigation into how and why we perceive images.

 

Urban is deeply engaged in the history and methodology of paint and in the act of painting itself. Strong brushstrokes and charcoal drawing are bedded within thickly applied paint. His work explores the interplay between representation and abstraction, simultaneously presenting two disparate threads of modern painting.

A true Renaissance man, Urban has spent his life studying histories of art, literature, and music. He completed both of his undergraduate degrees at York University in 1989, earning a BA in English Literature and a BFA in Painting and Drawing. He received two graduate degrees: a Masters in English Literature and Creative Writing from the University of Windsor in 1992 and an MFA in Visual Arts from the University of Guelph in 1994.
 
Over his career, Urban has had more than 40 solo exhibitions, including a presentation at the Art Gallery of Ontario, and participated in nearly 40 group exhibitions at galleries and institutions, such as MOCA Toronto (Toronto, ON), Shanghai Art Museum (Shanghai, China), Vancouver Art Gallery (Vancouver, BC), Musée d'Art Moderne de Saint-Etienne (La Terrasse, France), Galerie René Blouin (Montreal, QC), and Sable-Castelli Gallery (Toronto, ON). His work has been acquired by numerous private and public collections, including those of the National Gallery of Canada (Ottawa, ON), Musée des Beaux Arts (Montreal, QC), and the Art Gallery of Ontario (Toronto, ON).