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Russell M. Davidson Fine Art Location / Contact:
425 Ena Rd #306C
Honolulu, HI 96815
Phone: (808) 949-3935

Russell Davidson
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Name: Russell M. Davidson
College: University of Ohio
Major: Masters Degree in Fine Arts

Mr. Davidson is a former Professor of Art at the University of Hawaii. He has served as Artist in Residence at the Anderson Ranch Arts Foundation, Apsen Colorado, Artist in Residence at Kamuela Hawaii cosponsored by the Hawaii State Foundation On Culture and the Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts. Artist in Residence at William Stanley Hayter Atelier 17, Paris France.


" My paintings are derived from nature. I use the elemental process in nature as the basic form of expression dealing with the mystery of the world that is unexplainable and spiritually derived. These painting depict the forces of earth, wind, fire and water in conflict, but also in harmony. These are not specific areas, but are inspired by Hawaii and imagined spiritually.

The art of painting is different from the painting itself. Most people don't realize this. There is a solitude in the studio with the canvas and my moral and ethical creative process. It is a precious process and an obligation to truth with myself."


It wasn't the glorious facilities of the University of Hawaii print shop that kept former Midwest cowboy Russell Davidson in the islands. It was riding a wave like he rode a bronc. First came sailing, then hanging in the trapeze of a small catamaran, then windsurfing. He was hooked.

Backing up the story a bit -- an injury kept young Russell out of the rodeo ring. Graduate school in Ohio kept him in the art department. He thought about San Francisco as a place for art. "I only came to Hawaii for a nine-month contract to teach printmaking. I signed on for one year at a time," he says. He stayed on for twenty years.


Luckily for those who wanted to learn lithography, the ocean kept Russell in the islands. It certainly wasn't the lavish print shop that made him stay. As any printmaker will tell you, in 1970 there was no on-campus art building. Art 101 was taught in the Varsity Theater and the printmakers held court at what is now Puck's Alley. Late night printers had to deal with drunks and bar babies.

Russell was a painter. He painted what he lived. One wall-sized painting put the viewer right in the center of a rain squall at sea. You could smell the sea salt in the air. He was a corporate designer for the world's most famous windsurf equipment companies. He was "discovered" quickly and collected by the Hawaii State Foundation on Culture and Arts, The Contemporary Museum, the Honolulu Academy of Arts and fans across the globe. He probably can't name the countries where all his current collectors live.

In his new work Russell Davidson offers up a new color theory. His paintings glow through deep layers. He describes them as a conflict of complimentary colors that are in harmony. The painting, "Harmony", is five feet long. "I sometimes use four colors just to get red," he says, suggesting a mixture of cad red, yellow, pink, and green. "But I'm not saying for sure," he says with the winning smile that kept his printmaking students working all night just to please him.

The exhibition is at the Louis Pohl gallery. Pohl, famed for his printmaking and his painting, was an inspiration to the Hawaii art world and a pal to Davidson and all the other art faculty. Sandy Pohl keeps fine art in front of the public, in a gallery that gives artists a place to hang art and hang out. Listen in. The truth is way better than fiction.

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