TOUCH: David Fiveash, Emily Silver and Hadley Williams


Campfire Gallery is proud to present “Touch” featuring the work of three California artists; David Fiveash, Emily Silver and Hadley Williams.

Delving deeply into their own unique medium, each artist draws upon familiar physical environments and materials, exploring relationships between both objects and space. Delicately rendered but tight in execution, textures and patterns emerge that surprise us visually but also seek to connect us to our tactile senses and the use of touch to understand and appreciate our physical worlds.

David Fiveash

This work is inspired by the relationships of subject, symbol and space in historical Still Life painting.  With familiar subject matter, relatable environments and a generous execution, I aim to create work that welcomes a viewer into the created space.

Artistic pedagogy looks for an underlying meaning, whereby beauty for beauty itself becomes pedestrian.  I consistently try to steer clear of the philosophical as I believe an artists job is to present a moment of creativity from which ideas can be conceived by others.

Rather than challenge the on-lookers sensibility, my work aims to inspire your imaginative curiosity. The work is heavily aesthetic and meant to be calming without irony, intellectual priority or cynical taste. In a word: beautiful.

About the artist

David Fiveash received his MFA from the San Francisco Art Institute in 2009 and his BFA from Georgia Southern University in 2003. He has been exhibiting his work in solo and group exhibits since 2003 and currently lives and works in the Mission District of San Francisco.

Emily Silver

I’m interested in identifying the perceptions and sensations that form what Belden Lane, in his book The Solace of Fierce Landscapes, calls “acute, personal longing for fierce terrain”.

Raised in a family of geologists and artists and, above all, walkers, whose ancestors took part in the settling and mapping of the West, I have a deep affinity for the American desert, its natural systems, and the dynamics of our interaction with it. My watercolor paintings result from an effort to identify and understand those unmappable qualities of place that form the ache of desire. These are usually sensations recalled by our skin.

I spend as much time as possible in the desert walking, making intuitive maps, measuring distances, identifying and naming landmarks, and collecting sediment samples, objects, and snapshots–a starting place for my largely experimental painting practice.

In the studio, the action of sediment suspended in water keeps me constantly enthralled. Painting is the same as walking, really: a sequential process of unfolding revelations and recognition in which such things as touch, rhythm, trepidation, awe, intimacy, and atmosphere crystallize into palpable longing and desire–the physical miraculously transforms into the ephemeral.

About the artist

Emily Silver received her MFA in painting from the San Francisco Art Institute in 2007 and BA in Art/Visual Design from Stanford University in 1973. She has exhibited extensively throughout the U.S. in select solo and group shows and received numerous honors and awards. She currently lives and works in Ferndale, CA and is a member of the Board of Directors for the Humboldt Arts Council and Associate Faculty in Drawing & Painting at the College of Redwoods in Eureka, CA.

Hadley Williams

In my mixed media pieces I use paper, foam, fabric, pasta, correction tape and other prefabricated materials to form abstract structures on flat surfaces.

I create units out of the machine-made, representing perfection and control, and compose them into unevenly spaced and imperfectly connected wholes such as rows of text, columns of measurement and accumulations of cells.

I am trying to humanize and make flexible the mechanistic and rigid, and to allow the impulsive and the bodily to come forward.

About the the  artist

Raised in Boston and Palo Alto, Hadley Williams received a BS in Social Work from Cornell University and an MFA in Studio Arts from John F. Kennedy University.

She has been exhibiting in local galleries since 2006, including Arc Gallery in San Francisco, Branch Gallery in Oakland, Local 123 Gallery in Berkeley, and San Pablo Art Gallery. Most recently her work was exhibited in Paper Work, an off-site group show at the Oakland International Airport curated by Anthony Pinata of the Oakland Museum.

Her art is published in California Home and Design Magazine, the literary journal 580 Split, the Berkeley Times and the Piedmont Post. It has been featured on the websites of the Oakland Museum, the interior design firm Jute Home, Bay Area Visual Artists Network, Art Business and Pivot Gallery.

Hadley’s shows received two Critic’s Picks reviews in the East Bay Express and a Critic’s Choice review in The East Bay Monthly. Her work is in corporate and private collections nationwide. She lives with her husband and daughter in the East Bay, and works in her studio in the Berkeley ActivSpace building.