Michael David (American, born 1954)

Abstract painter Michael David is best known for his use of encaustic, a technique that incorporates heated beeswax and pigment. Considered an inheritor of Abstract Expressionism, David’s abstract work primarily centers on the use of a densely layered surface to facilitate a direct and immediate spiritual experience. He often incorporates religious iconography and symbolism, art historical themes such as the nude, and contemporary politics into his paintings resulting in a critical dialogue between the layered abstraction of the surface and the integrated representational imagery. Alongside his work on canvas, David has developed a body of studio photography that recreates paintings by Caravaggio, Manet, and Mantegna, among others, in works that confront racism, homophobia, and sexism. David also works in mixed media and environmental sculpture, still within the horizon of his abiding concerns for sociopolitical questioning through art-making.