Dave Williams is a self-taught artist born in Australia in ’62. His art has been widely acclaimed and exhibited in Perth, Broome, New Zealand, France, Singapore, China and the USA. Dave has progressed his art career in a new direction by collaborating with family, friends, and carefully selected ethical suppliers to launch the salty, artsy, down to earth, conservation-minded, Australian brand ‘dave’.
Dave’s art is unmistakeably bold and surreal, with lines that draw the viewer straight into the thick of the action. He’s one of our favourite artists so we were stoked to catch up and find out what keeps him inspired. Enjoy!
HEY DAVE! HOW’S YOUR DAY GOING?
Pretty good so far, thanks! How are you? I’ve been super busy building things and fitting out my studio/bus for a trip down south to the NSW and Victorian coasts for summer…catch up on some waves, old friends and family along the way, and park up under a tree and paint. Maybe get some wax carving done for my new cast silver jewellery collection.
Brisbane was slightly hammered by Mother Nature the other day so the sidewalk’s been strewn with all the hardware you could dream of…waiting to be dragged off to landfill, so I managed to rescue some sweet old weatherboards while riding my bike home the other day, and along with a couple of sawn off 2nd hand sail-boards, created a new ‘wardrobe’ for my bus, with the idea to keep my art-shirt’s smooth for the odd market/pop-up store along the way to help pay for gas.
HAD ANY GOOD WAVES LATELY?
Well my studio in West End was about an hour from the ocean, so for the past 6 months not as often as I’d like, however lately I’ve managed a few nice sliders at Rainbow Bay and North Stradbroke Island.
WHERE DO YOU GET YOUR INSPIRATION AND HOW DO YOU STAY MOTIVATED?
I’m pretty much inspired by daily life around me, also the wider world…issues to do with people and the planet, especially ocean related….also simple living, surfing, extremes, reading about other artists lives, music, animals, poetry, injustice, the desire to try and inspire change in some small way.
I’m really passionate about raising awareness for shark conservation. Sharks are 90% wiped out already, mostly for the shark fin soup trade. People are also mislead into irrational fear by the media and allow useless nets off our beaches to kill all sorts of innocent wildlife. The good news is…young consumers are realizing shark fin soup is totally uncool, and there are some great alternatives to shark nets out there now in WA and elsewhere, so lets hope we can help them make a comeback.
I love my job and feel blessed to be pretty much following my dreams, so I don’t have too much trouble staying motivated. Also I guess I’m driven to nail that elusive ‘perfect’ painting… maybe when I’m about 108 I’ll finally nail it and topple off my perch with a big grin.
WHAT ARE THE PERFECT CONDITIONS FOR CREATIVITY?
Surf early in the morning, catch-up with friends and family, coffee, charcoals, oil paint, an old surfboard for a canvas, good music, lock myself away… get lost in it.
DO YOU HAVE A MANTRA OR WORDS OF WISDOM TO LIVE BY?
Nothing specific that I chant every morning, although that might be fun. Maybe, ‘let go’ – value the real stuff.
I guess ideally… live a simple, salty life, serendipity, work hard, respect others…especially nature, curiosity, listen to the inner/outer child, gratitude, compassion… and love! Yea man love, that’s the answer!
IF YOU COULD GO ON A TWO WEEK SURF TRIP WITH ANY THREE PEOPLE, INCLUDING HISTORICAL FIGURES, WHO WOULD YOU CHOOSE, WHERE WOULD YOU GO AND WHY?
That’s a hard one…So many interesting people out there…I guess I’d have to narrow it down to a few of my heroes in the conservation world…maybe Tim Flannery, Silvia Earle… and Captain Goodvibes 😉
We could all set sail on a Polynesian catamaran to the outer islands of New Guinea…I’ve always dreamed of surfing up there. I’m not sure if two of the chosen three even surf! So it’d be nice and uncrowded…Just me and my favorite Pig! Bobbin’ around between surfs listening to Sylvia and Tim’s inspiring conversations with the good Capt’ belching his unique brand of philosophy, beer and flotsam all over the deck…just to keep things real.
TOP 3 THINGS YOU’D LIKE TO DO IN 2015?
Well, probably something along the lines of a re-occurring theme in my paintings…. Stumble upon a simple art studio with loft on a hill overlooking the beach, a solar/wind powered old shack with a veggie patch, chooks and water tank….uncrowded ‘A frames’ breaking into the distance… rugged right hand point, all within bike-riding distance from friends, family and a bus stop into the city… that’s all. Yep, I’m dreaming ;))…is that 3 yet?
love it! THANKS DAVE, HOW CAN PEOPLE CONNECT WITH YOU TO FIND OUT MORE?