Damon Davis (b. 1985) is an award-winning, post-disciplinary artist based in St. Louis, Missouri. In a practice that is part therapy, part social commentary, his work spans across a spectrum of creative mediums to tell stories exploring how identity is informed by power and mythology. Davis seeks to empower and give voice to the powerless and combat systems of oppression, focusing not only on pain but also on the joy of the Black experience.
His first solo exhibition Darker Gods in The Garden of Low Hanging Heavens premiered in St. Louis in 2018, traveling to Art Basel Miami later that year. In 2020, critic Ben Davis cited Davis’ project All Hands On Deck, which captured the hands of people who shaped and upheld the Ferguson movement, as one of the “100 Works of Art That Defined the Decade.” Acclaimed cultural critic/scholar Jeff Chang also licensed this work as the cover for his 2016 book We Gon’ Be Alright: Notes on Race and Resegregation. Davis has work in the permanent collection at the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture and the Saint Louis Art Museum, and he has exhibited at the Museum of Contemporary African Diasporan Arts, the Saint Louis Art Museum, as well as at the San Diego Contemporary Museum of Art.
Davis is co-director of the critically acclaimed documentary Whose Streets?, chronicling the 2014 Ferguson rebellion which premiered at the 2017 Sundance Film Festival. Davis was named one of Filmmaker Magazine‘s Twenty Five New Faces of Independent Film and Independent Magazine‘s 10 Filmmakers to Watch. The documentary short A Story to Tell (2013), which profiled Davis’ work and creative process, earned him an Emmy Award Mid-America for Best Short Form Program as a producer.
Davis’ work has been nominated for a Critic’s Choice Award, Gotham Award, and NAACP Image Award. He is the founder and creative director of St. Louis-based music label/ artist collective FarFetched. Davis is a 2015 Firelight Media Fellow, 2016 Sundance Music and Sound Design Lab Fellow, 2017 TED Fellow, 2017 Root100 Honoree, 2020 Monument Lab Transnational Fellow, and 2020-2022 Kennedy Center Citizen Artist Fellow. Davis is represented by Ummah Chroma Creative Partners for commercials, branded content, and music videos, and Untitled Entertainment for film and television work.