Israel “Izzy” Davis is an artist, educator, musician, BMX biker, and skateboarding enthusiast who lives and works in Grand Rapids, MI. After a decade of teaching at the university level he is currently focusing on his personal creative practice and has been working to produce a new body of work that utilizes ceramics, digital fabrication technologies, and mixed media. Upon receiving a series of private grants to purchase equipment and take technical courses in 3-D modeling and CNC fabrication, Davis has been busy setting up a small fab lab at his studio, Fundamental Formative Arts LLC (FUNFA). The FabLab at FUNFA currently boasts an Epilog laser etcher/cutter, a ShopBot CNC router, and a Ricoh ceramic toner laser printer.
Davis has presented more than 40 technical workshops and lectures nationally and internationally and has taught several summer intensives, including courses at Ox-Bow School of Art and Artist's Residency, Saugatuck, MI, Penland School of Crafts, Penland, NC, and Ceramica Artistic Prospettiva, Trieste, Italy. He served as the Ceramics Program Director at the Urban Institute of Contemporary Arts, Grand Rapids, MI, from 2004-2012, where he was awarded a solo show in 2005. He has exhibited work in more than 100 exhibitions including venues such as the Ogden Museum of Southern Art, University of New Orleans, New Orleans, LA, the Fort Wayne Art Museum, Fort Wayne, IN, and the Society for Contemporary Craft, Pittsburgh, PA. Davis has participated in numerous artist residencies including a project residency at the European Ceramic Work Centre, Oisterwijk, Netherlands, where he spent three weeks in their FabLab focusing on CAM/CAD fabrication to produce molds for pressure-casting ceramic paper airplanes in porcelain.
Izzy sees himself as a lifelong learner. He enjoys being a student, learning new skills, and taking classes from peers. His interests reflect an innate desire to be active, practice, and progress in a creative and productive lifestyle. Investigating art and teaching are catalysts toward that end.