Named in recognition of the generosity of Clarence A. (Dave) Davis, Jr. ‘48, the Davis Gallery is an academic resource of Hobart and William Smith Colleges. The Davis Gallery at Houghton House is the exhibition space of the Department of Art and Architecture. The Gallery has six or seven shows each year beginning with a faculty exhibition and ending the year with a student exhibition. In between, a variety of artists and architects are invited to show their work and an exhibition from the Collections of Hobart and William Smith Colleges is staged.
The mission of the Gallery is to exhibit, and make accessible works of art in support of the educational goals of the Colleges and for the benefit of the community at large. The Davis Gallery is primarily a space to immerse Hobart and William Smith College students in visual culture by providing an environment for studying the role of art and architecture in shaping, embodying and interpreting cultures. As such, the Gallery provides a forum for the creative and critical expression of artists, architects, historians, and curators. The stewardship of the Colleges’ permanent collection and a program of temporary exhibitions are the central components of the Davis Gallery. Related activities such as lectures, panel discussions, residencies, tours, acquisitions, conservation projects, and campus displays provide aesthetic, educational, and cultural opportunities for a variety of audiences.
In conjunction with rotating exhibitions, collection-related projects, and Colleges courses, the Gallery presents lectures and workshops during the academic year. Programs are free and open to the public.
The Gallery welcomes individuals and groups for guided tours of exhibitions in order to provide learning opportunities and museum experiences for everyone. Gallery staff and trained student docents will create individualized tours to meet your needs. Community groups are also encouraged to visit and arrange educational tours.
Exhibitions and works of art can illuminate topics in a broad variety of courses in the Arts, Humanities, Social Sciences and Sciences. Our primary goal is to integrate the Gallery's activities and events into the Colleges curriculum, while working in partnership with the community at large.
Students actively participate in all aspects of Gallery programming and collection management, learning museum standards and methods of art handling and registration, assisting with the installation of rotating exhibitions and campus displays, as well as conducting research for curatorial purposes and educational programs. Students can utilize works of art for course-related projects or work on exhibitions from the permanent collection.
Hobart and William Smith students have the opportunity to participate in the Art Collection Internship. The students involved in the internship engage in research and development of exhibitions for the Collections of Hobart & William Smith Colleges, research and writing of catalogs for collection exhibitions, compiling registration records for the artwork files of the collection and conservation and preservation of the collection.