David Beck

Alligator Maintenance and Other Esoterica

January 12 – February 20, 2016

David Beck

David Beck

Untitled

Circa late 1970s

Mixed media construction

11 x 8 1/4 x 13 1/2 in. (open)

David Beck

David Beck

Momentary Indiscretions

1984

Mixed media: wood, glass, modeling clay, metal, wire and hair

65 x 10 1/2 x 21 1/2 in.

 

David Beck

David Beck

Momentary Indiscretions (detail)

1984

Mixed media: wood, glass, modeling clay, metal, wire and hair

65 x 10 1/2 x 21 1/2 in.

David Beck

David Beck

Little Egypt

Circa late 1970's

Mixed media construction

12 x 7 7/8 in.

David Beck

David Beck

Pagliacci (Clown)

1994-1998

Mixed media: carved and painted wood and metal

5 1/2 x 4 x 4 in. 

David Beck

David Beck

Esad: Half Man Half Enigma

1981

Mixed media: painted wood and mirror

8 x 5 x 4 in.

David Beck

David Beck

...Bobby...oh Bobby?

Mixed media: plaster, epoxy, wood and grass

15 x 6 1/2 x 5 in.

David Beck

David Beck

Diner Dinner

1980

Mixed media construction

5 7/8 x 8 3/4 x 3 1/4 in.

David Beck

David Beck

Dragon

1995-1998

Mixed media

18 x 31 x 14 1/2 in.

David Beck

David Beck

Rhino Room

1979

Mixed media construction

6 1/2 x 10 x 5 in.

David Beck

David Beck

Drawing with Talking Alligator

Circa Mid-1970s

Mixed media: ink on paper, carved and painted wood and metal

5 x 5 x 1 1/4 in.

David Beck

David Beck

Da Sunshine East, Da Sunshine West But I Know Where da Sunshine Best

Circa late 1970s

Mixed media box construction

15 1/4 x 12 x 1 1/4 in. 

David Beck

David Beck

Uncle Rebus, Tools and Animals

1978

Mixed media: ink and watercolor on paper, wood and string

11 1/4 x 15 in.

David Beck

David Beck

He Returns In a Triumph

1975

Mixed media box construction

10 x 10 x 4 in.

David Beck

David Beck

Flying With Tap Happy Shoes

1975

Mixed media on paper

14 x 11 in.

David Beck

David Beck

Mike Rowes' Scope

Circa 1975-76

Mixed media: ink on paper, carved and painted wood and glass

11 1/4 x 12 3/4 in.

David Beck

David Beck

Untitled (Dodo with Interior Dodo Diorama)

1977

Mixed media: carved and painted wood, glass and feathers

21 x 14 x 27 in.

David Beck

David Beck

Untitled (Dodo with Interior Dodo Diorama) (with wings open) 

1977

Mixed media: carved and painted wood, glass and feathers

21 x 14 x 27 in.

David Beck

David Beck

Untitled (Dodo with Interior Dodo Diorama) (interior)

1977

Mixed media: carved and painted wood, glass and feathers

21 x 14 x 27 in.

 

David Beck

David Beck

Alligator Maintenance Diploma

1976

Mixed media construction

18 3/8 x 24 1/2 x 1 1/2 in. (overall)

David Beck

David Beck

Dancing on Joe's New Wall to Wall

1976

Mixed media construction

20 1/2 x 25 in.

David Beck

David Beck

La Dance O da Palma

Circa 1975-76

Mixed media construction

13 1/2  x 12 in.

David Beck

David Beck

Intimidation of the Chair

Circa Mid-1970s

Ink on paper

3 3/4 x 3 3/4  x 3/4 in.

David Beck

David Beck

Just Call Me Dead Eye

Circa 1975-76

Mixed media construction

12 x 13 1/2 in. 

David Beck

David Beck

Untitled

1984

Mixed media: carved and painted wood, metal and a feather

3 1/4 x 4 1/2 x 2 1/4 in.

David Beck

David Beck

Untitled

circa 1980

Mixed media: carved and painted wood and metal

1 1/4 x 2 1/8 x 1 1/8 in. (closed)

3.2 x 5.4 x 2.9 cm

David Beck

David Beck

Untitled

1980

Mixed media: carved and painted wood, metal and leather

2 3/4 x 1 11/16 x 1 3/16 in. (closed)

7 x 5.1 x 10.2 cm

David Beck

David Beck

DODO MUSEUM

1980

Mixed media: wood, feathers, copper and electric lightbulb

86 1/2 x 34 x 36 in. (overall)

David Beck

David Beck  

DODO MUSEUM (detail) 

1980

Mixed media: wood, feathers, copper and electric lightbulb

86 1/2 x 34 x 36 in. (overall)

David Beck

David Beck

DODO MUSEUM (interior)

1980

Mixed media: wood, feathers, copper and electric lightbulb

86 1/2 x 34 x 36 in. (overall)

David Beck

David Beck

DODO MUSEUM (interior detail) 

1980

Mixed media: wood, feathers, copper and electric lightbulb

86 1/2 x 34 x 36 in. (overall)

219.7 x 86.4 x 91.4 cm

ASG DBe 184

David Beck

David Beck

Anonymity

1980

Mixed media construction

6 1/8 x 8 1/8 x 3 1/8 in.

David Beck

David Beck

Shoooo Box Reunion

1981

Mixed media construction

6 x 8 1/8 x 3 1/2 in.

David Beck

David Beck

Immunity Wore a Disguise

1980

Mixed media box construction

6 3/4 x 8 x 3 1/4 in.

David Beck

David Beck

Past Perfect

1982

Mixed media box construction

6 x 8 x 3 1/2 in.

David Beck

David Beck

DODO

2008

archival pigment on Somerset Satin White 300gms paper

19 1/4 x 24 3/8 in.

AP, outside the edition of 22

Press Release

Allan Stone Projects is pleased to present David Beck: Alligator Maintenance and Other Esoterica, on view from January 12- February 20, 2016. Selected from the Allan Stone Collection, this solo exhibition surveys sculptures, objets d’arts, and works on paper spanning over thirty years by the multidisciplinary artist. The exhibition highlights two monumental works including the DODO MUSEUM, 1980, which was recently exhibited at the Smithsonian American Art Museum in 2014-2015, and a mechanized self-portrait sculpture of the artist.

 

The DODO MUSEUM is a sophisticated example of Beck’s refined carving techniques. Referencing Greek revival and Victorian architectural motifs, the museum opens up to a replicated skeleton of the extinct bird and a gallery of miniature paintings recounting its poignant history. Unlike most sculptors, Beck invites the viewer to explore a sculpture’s insides, to witness its moving parts. The museum is a testament to Beck’s artistic skills inspired by simple mechanics, crank toys, and 18th century automata. Although these works appear to be whimsical, they in fact explore deeper ideas on loss, pathos, and the arbitrariness of civilization.

 

At the core of Beck’s endeavors is the dual experience of the art object: one that is experienced from the exterior and the other from the interior. Beck creates whole worlds that at once evoke elements of surprise and curiosity, but also explore complex issues in unexpected ways. Other works on view such as box dioramas, multi-media works on paper, and carved objects in large and miniature scale illustrate the range of Beck’s interests, from popular culture to classical art and architecture. Above all, they are rich worlds waiting to be discovered.

 

David Beck was born in Muncie, Indiana in 1953. After a year at Indiana University Bloomington, he studied painting and sculpture at Carnegie-Mellon, and received his BFA in 1976. That year he moved to New York and was included in a group exhibition at Allan Stone Gallery, where he exhibited regularly from then on. In 2006, the Smithsonian American Art Museum commissioned MVSEVM, which is on permanent display. Beck has been reviewed in The New York Times, the Smithsonian Magazine, Art & Antiques Magazine, and Art in America. Beck has had exhibitions at the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum of Art, MoMA PS1, and others. He lives and works in San Francisco.