Dale Brockman Davis – Leimert Park – 08/16/2013

I met with Dale Brockman Davis at the California African American Museum in Exposition Park to see his some of his recent work in an exhibition entitled “Diverted Destruction 6” organized by CAAM and The Loft at Liz’s. Dale took over a large wall and significant area of floor space to display a collection of sculptures that are tributes to Jazz Musicians. From Dale’s statement “I am using the same elements in the creation of visual art that musicians use in the creation music. That’s the lesson learned. The end result is a dynamic feeling of sensitivity that comes through music as color, tone, texture reconfigured into the solid form of these assemblages, each creating a harmonious composition.” In some instances, Dale has left one whole instrument within the sculpture that remains playable—an unspoken invitation for a musician to interact or add his own improvisations to the artwork. Dale was kind enough to take me over to his studio spaces. I was moved by the Jazz Series that includes his “Visual Skiffles.” This series is inspired by the one-stringed instruments of the Baka people of central Africa and DIY instruments known as skiffles. Skiffles improvisational instruments made from jugs, jars, washboards, wash tubs, thimbles, spoons, tin cans, shells and all kinds of other domestic, utilitarian objects.