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Sarah Danays

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Golden Bough, 2014 C Print © Courtesy of the Artist and ROBERT BERMAN GALLERY B7
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Quick Facts
Birthplace
Bristol, England
Birth year
1965
Schools
Representing galleries
Brenda Harrop, California, USA. NAG Art Gallery, Pietrasanta, Italy.
“Danays effects such radical juxtaposition with such remarkable craft.” Peter Frank, US Art Critic

Sarah Danays (nee Forrester) was born in 1965 in Bristol, England.  She graduated with a Joint Honors Degree in Fine Art and Art History from Camberwell College of Arts in 1993 (now part of University of the Arts, London) and had her first solo show at the Adam Gallery, London in 1995. In 2003 she gained an MA in Textiles as Contemporary Art Practice from the Department of Art, Goldsmiths, University of London - where she is now considered a Gold Alumni - and later went on to study Stone Carving for Contemporary Sculptors at City & Guilds, London.  In 2008 she was shortlisted in Le Prix de la Sculpture Noilly Prat as one of the UK’s top five emerging sculptors.

In 2010 she relocated to Los Angeles, California and in 2013 was awarded a scholarship by the Los Angeles Art Association (LAAA), with her first LA solo show opening at Robert Berman Gallery in 2014. In 2016 she was included in the ‘British Invasion’ at MOAH, showing the best of British artists working in LA since the 60s, spearheaded by David Hockney.  In the same year ‘Sarah Danays’ Arms of the Portland Vase’ was exhibited at the Harley Gallery, Nottinghamshire, England.  A sculpture installation inspired by the finest example of Roman cameo glass - the Barberini Vase, which was smuggled out of Italy in 1784 and purchased by the Duchess of Portland.  

Continuing to exhibit in LA (notably the prestigious Pacific Design Center) in the Spring of 2018 Danays relocated her studio from Venice Beach, California to the hills of the Garfagnana, Tuscany.  Here she is developing a new body of work in collaboration with the University of Birmingham’s Music Department inspired by sacred Medieval music and sculpture, carving rare English Fauld alabaster using just hand tools.

Danays’ sculpture and photography is inspired by gesture and antiquities, notably broken ones.  Her practice involves extensive research into an object’s history and context to develop new interpretations for significant museum pieces, and to inform the “treatment” of the objects she seeks out for repair.  In her “metaphysical surgery” fragments from sacred and secular antiquities are intermingled with marvels from nature and her own marble and alabaster carvings - or work of past anonymous sculptors - to create a unique fusion of energies and symbols.

She has exhibited internationally and her work is public and private collections in Europe, America and Australia.  

“More than anything Sarah Danays work impresses me because of its ability to gain sweeping significance through a meticulous care for detail applied to idiosyncratic particulars”   Dr Ken Arnold, Creative Director, Wellcome Trust, London and Medical Museion, Copenhagen

“Grim, poignant and graceful”  John Seed for the Huffington Post, reviewing the 'British Invasion' MOAH, November 2017