b. 1961, England.
David Godbold’s work has often concentrated on the production of visual imagery in high and low culture. Through drawing, painting and mixed media, his work offers a critical examination into the image-making process, alongside a semiotic, epistemological and personal investigation into culture and linear historicism.
Following a formative residency at PS1/MoMA, New York in 2000, Godbold began pairing classically articulated ink drawings with very contemporary, irreverent ‘captions’, forming image/texts – a practice that has remained at the core of his work. These works were often completed using found materials (discarded printed matter, old tickets and leaflets), then arranged into large-scale, scatter-hung agglomerations of caustic cartoons. Clashing past with present, highbrow with lowbrow, Godbold’s best-known work bridges old master painting with contemporary, populist forms of media such as political cartoons, comics, children’s colouring books and illustrator’s compendiums.
Having moved to Ireland at the beginning of the 1990s, the legacy of European colonialism has also been a particularly pressing concern for this much-travelled Englishman, who has lived for long stretches in Australia and the US. In 2005 Godbold was controversially selected to officially document the recent UK parliamentary elections in a series of drawings for the permanent collection of the House of Commons.
Recent exhibitions include A Visual Odyssey, Jing Gallery, Beijing (2015); Things Go Dark, The Model, Sligo; Zeichen. Sprache. Bilder, Städtische Galerie, Karlsruhe (2014); Von der Heydt Museum, Germany (2011); Dublin Contemporary (2011); the Irish Museum of Modern Art (2011, 2009); Barbican Centre, London (2010) and Lots of Things Like This, curated by David Eggers, at apexart, New York (2008). Godbold’s work is represented in the collections of Trinity College, Dublin; the Irish Museum of Modern Art; City Bank, New York, and numerous other public and private collections worldwide.