Life leaves traces. The natural world is shaped and reshaped by human occupation. Cultural histories accrue like strata in the rock.
So argues Dave Hullfish Bailey. His wide-ranging artistic practice — which includes sculpture and installation as well as drawings, photographs and social interventions — investigates both the geologic and the narrative forces embodied within contemporary landscapes. Combining direct investigation with scholarly research and poetic speculation, Bailey seeks to create a “feedback loop between the given and the possible.”
This fall, the Saint Louis Art Museum and the Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts at Washington University in St. Louis will welcome Bailey as their 2018-19 Henry L. and Natalie E. Freund Teaching Fellow.
“Dave’s work probes a broad array of cultural landscapes, and how links between systems manifest on various perceptual, theoretical and linguistic levels,” said Patricia Olynyk, the Florence and Frank Bush Professor and director of the Sam Fox School’s Graduate School of Art.
“His work dances across myriad themes, from community development and experimental geography to field-based learning platforms and public education after the Great Depression,” Olynyk added. “I am very excited that he’ll be joining us for the coming year.”
Supported by the Henry L. and Natalie E. Freund Endowment Fund, the Freund Teaching Fellowship is designed to promote the creation and exhibition of contemporary art as well as the teaching of contemporary art principles. It consists of two month-long residencies, during which recipients lead studios in the Sam Fox School while preparing an exhibition for the museum’s Currents series.
“We at the museum are all very much looking forward to welcoming Dave as the upcoming Freund Teaching Fellow,” said Hannah Klemm, assistant curator of modern and contemporary art at the Saint Louis Art Museum. “Throughout his impressive career, Dave had been creating strong, multidisciplinary, conceptually driven work that aims to create space for dialogue as opposed to fixed categories and classifications. We are excited about his time in St. Louis and his upcoming Currents exhibition.”
Dave Hullfish Bailey
Born in Denver and currently based in Los Angeles, Bailey has exhibited at major museums, galleries and artist spaces around the world, including The Secession in Vienna; REDCAT in Los Angeles; the Casco Office for Art, Design and Theory in Utrecht, the Netherlands; London’s Raven Row; and Sweden’s Tensta Konsthall and Malmo Konsthall.
Bailey is the recipient of a 2018 Guggenheim Fellowship and author of several artist books, including “Union Pacific” (1999), “Elevator” (2006) and “What’s Left” (2009). In 2017, Bailey and Aboriginal writer and activist Sam Watson released “CityCat Project 2006-2016,” which documents a subversive performance designed to empower indigenous populations along Australia’s Brisbane (Maiwar) River.
Other major projects include “Broken Country” (2013), which explored the legacy of Colorado’s Drop City, a short-lived experimental community founded in 1965; “Ditch/School” (2008), which investigated the accidental formation of California’s Salton Sea; and “Listening Post” (2004), a commission for Denmark’s Herning Kunstmuseum, which highlighted the ruptures between knowledge of a place and what we might wish that place to be.
In 2009, Bailey’s installation “To do with a wide spot along a dusty road crossing a dry channel, between the old end of Old Red and the dead end of the New West” was presented at the Contemporary Art Museum St. Louis. Last spring, he presented an artist talk and discussion about his practice to Sam Fox School students.
Saint Louis Art Museum
The Saint Louis Art Museum is one of the nation’s leading comprehensive art museums with collections that include works of art of exceptional quality from virtually every culture and time period. Areas of notable depth include Oceanic art, pre-Columbian art, ancient Chinese bronzes and European and American art of the late 19th and 20th centuries, with particular strengths in 20th-century German art. The museum offers a full range of exhibitions and educational programming generated independently and in collaboration with local, national and international partners.
Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts
The Sam Fox School supports the creation, study and exhibition of multidisciplinary and collaborative work. Offering rigorous art and architecture education at both the undergraduate and graduate levels, the Sam Fox School links two academic units — the College of Art and College of Architecture — with the university’s nationally recognized Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum.