As a multidisciplinary artist, my work shifts between two- and three-dimensional art, functional objects and graphic design. My process combines traditional craft, experimental techniques and at times new technologies.
I work primarily in wood and paper, usually combining the two materials. Often, I will incorporate paper once used for print communications. This former life as ephemera gives my work an additional layer of content—a separate history—coaxing the viewer to think beyond formal and material appreciation and into cultural manifestation.
Shifting between sculptures and functional objects, I utilize traditional materials in experimental ways. My aim is to entice the viewer—or user—into seeing these objects anew. When combining time-honored methods of craft with personalized techniques, I discover new forms emerge that challenge old notions of art and design. Inventive production leads to intriguing results.
Regarding My Type Series
My ongoing type series explores the intrinsic attributes of the Roman alphabet and Arabic numerals. I am fascinated by the fact that these abstract symbols possess an inherent and overriding power to communicate.
Among the first shapes we learn to draw as children, letters and numbers are rooted deep within our culture. They represent the sounds that make up the words that carry our message. These characters are meant to be combined in groups and glanced at, not taken in as individual forms. But my work directs the focus back to the formal qualities of typography. My aim is to elicit new ideas beyond the conventional understanding of each character by manipulating their form.
A kind of Humanity
I believe there is a unique quality to something made by hand. It has soul. The maker’s spirit is infused in the work.
But I equally believe in a direct connection between the maker and the owner of an art object. It is a dialog; a give and take. There is something inherently good at play in this. It is a kind of humanity, a sharing of inspiration. The maker is inspired in the work and the owner is inspired by the work.
To surround one’s self with objects that inspire is a way of telling of your own story, it makes life joyful and rich.
Working with Paper
As a graphic designer, the world of premium quality paper has been an integral part of my work. I have a deep appreciation for the art and science that goes into making this paper. The fact that it’s derived from a tree and usually discarded after use is not lost on me.
As a wood worker, I have a deep appreciation for trees both in nature and as a utilitarian material. Therefore, I find it hard to part with beautifully crafted paper. After years of collecting such paper, I decided to incorporate it into my artwork. It’s a joy giving new life and purpose to paper that would otherwise be discarded.
2020 Solo Show: “Numbers & Letters” St. Joseph’s College, Board Room Gallery: Patchogue, NY
2019 “Drawing Obsessions” Patchogue Arts Council Gallery: Patchogue, NY
2017 “LIC Arts Fall Salon” The Plaxall Gallery: Queens, NY
2017 “Et Tu, Art Brute?” Andrew Edlin Gallery: NYC, NY
2017 “Live—Work—Play NYC” LIC Arts Open Gallery at The Factory: Queens, NY
2014 LIC Arts Open: Queens, NY
2013 “Curate NYC”: NYC, NY
2013 LIC Arts Open: Queens, NY
2012 LIC Arts Open: Queens, NY
2011 “Kaleidoscope” Lana Santorelli Gallery: Hoboken, NJ
2011 LIC Arts Open: Queens, NY
2010 “Hemispheres” Lana Santorelli Gallery: NYC, NY
2010 “International Juried Sculpture Exhibition” Rogue Space: NYC, NY
2010 Open Studios LIC Art Center: Queens, NY
2007 Red Dot, Paradigm Art: NYC, NY
2006 AAF, Paradigm Art: NYC, NY
1995 “23rd Annual Competition for NC Artists” Fayetteville Museum of Art: Fayetteville, NC
Appalachian Artist Collection, Boone, NC
2017 GRAPHIS Logo Design 9
2012 GRAPHIS Logo Design 8
2011 Choi’s Gallery Magazine, Gallery, Vol. 13
2011 GRAPHIS Design Annual
2010 HOW International Design Annual
2010 Neenah Paper’s PAPERWORKS, Silver
2008 HOW International Design Annual
2008 PRINT’s Regional Design Annual
1999 PRINT’s Best Logos & Symbols 6
1999 PRINT’s Regional Design Annual
1999 American Corporate Identity
1998 Award of Excellence, Corporate Branding—Association of American Medical Colleges
1998 Bronze Medal, Publications—CASE/Council for Advancement and Support of Education
2018 School of Visual Arts, NYC, NY
Substitute Instructor, Illustration Department
– Typography & Image
2008 Scholastic Art & Writing Awards, NYC, NY
Juror, Visual Arts
Reviews & Press
Daniel A. Rabuzzi, “Long Island City Open Studio Tour: “Numbers” (David Ferris),” Lobster & Canary (blog).
“David Ferris—Graphic Designer Profile,” Grafik Tasarim, no. 48 (May/June 2012): 20-29.
BFA, Appalachian State University, Boone, NC