Over the course of a career spanning more than 20 years, Guadalajara-based José Dávila has engaged with the architecture, symbolism, and material integration of space. In his practice, he poises disparate kinds of lithic bodies ranging from basalt stone and volcanic rock to more quotidian materials like limestone and concrete against each other in order to create a delicate interaction of volume and mass. Intimating utopian ideals, Dávila brings uncut rock and sculpted concrete into uneasy congruence, thereby realizing an equilibrium that holds differently weighted materials in place.
While the language of sculpture traditionally speaks to solidity and permanence, Dávila’s work evinces a fragility that contrasts with the density of the materials he puts to use. As though verging on the brink of collapse, his take on sculptural form introduces viewers to a clash of directional energies, resulting in a precarious appearance that undercuts monolithic stability. What comes to light is less a single unified object than an exchange of physical forces, a cross-section of elemental processes that refer to the inexorable law of gravity.
Dávila’s articulation of space mimics primal human behaviors such as stacking and balancing, underscoring their capacity to express a collectively shared impulse toward construction.