Arthur Bowen Davies (American, 1862–1928), Air, Light, and Wave, ca. 1914-1917.

Arthur Bowen Davies (American, 1862–1928), Air, Light, and Wave, ca. 1914-1917. Oil on canvas, 26 1/16 x 39 7/8 inches. High Museum of Art Atlanta, purchase with Henry B. Scott Fund, accession no. 59.27.


As one of the chief coordinators of the celebrated Armory Show of 1913 that first introduced the work of European avant-garde artists to the United States, Arthur Bowen Davies played a key role in the introduction of radical art forms in this country. In his own work Davies embraced a paradoxical approach to art-making that was both intuitive and intellectual, particularly in the variety of ways he treated the human figure. This painting stands at the stylistic midpoint in his work, between tradition oriented art and the rise of the abstract, synesthetic Synchromism movement, the most advanced mode of American painting at the time (source: High Museum of Art Atlanta).