statement + cv


David Palmquist is a painter living in Brookline, Massachusetts and working at Vernon Street Studios in Somerville, Massachusetts. David was born in 1972 in Escanaba, Michigan and spent his formative years in Minneapolis, Minnesota. David attended North Park College, in Chicago, Illinois and graduated with a bachelor's degree in Finance in 1994. In 1996 he relocated to the Boston, Massachusetts area. In 2003, David began showing his work as part of Brookline Artist's Open Studios and later as part of Somerville Open Studios. In addition to participating in open studios David has also shown his work at various regional and local institutions including: the AIB Gallery at University Hall of Lesley University, the Little Compton Community Center, Ilex Designs, Bromfield Gallery, the Gallery 1581 at the Boston Graduate School of Psychoanalysis, The Center for the Arts Natick, Trestle Gallery, The Washington Street Arts Center, the Nave Gallery, Transit Gallery, 13 Forest Gallery, Copley Society, Brickbottom Gallery, Maynard Art Space, Fort Point Arts Community and Stove Factory Gallery.

Download David's curriculum vitae (PDF).


I enjoy a certain predilection for order; this tends to carry over into my paintings in the form of graphing, pixilation, and exaggerated definition. I am drawn to images that lend themselves to segregation into smaller divisions and to images that when viewed in a different scale reveal another reality.

Satellite Imagery

In 2005, I began exploring an interest in maps through a series of paintings from satellite images. This largely corresponded with satellite imagery becoming available through sites such as TerraServer® and Google™. Although my interest was initially driven by a curiosity of places experienced representationally, I have found that these images are especially intriguing when viewed outside this context. Therefore, in selecting images I have gravitated toward compositions that when manipulated lend themselves to misinterpretation. Many of the works feature urban spaces dominated by buildings and roads which also resemble various things such as cells in a Petri dish, medical dissections, or computer circuitry.

Modular Hi-Rises

In 2008, I began photographing buildings, in particular modern hi-rises, as source material for digital collage and paintings. Using Adobe® Photoshop® I cut sections of these buildings and transform them to identical dimensions. Once transformed, I paste these sections within a larger grid to create a new hi-rise. The resulting hi-rise resembles its source, but is simplified as it is composed of only similar sections, which are often repeated, and laid on a grid void of perspective.

Motion Blur

In 2009, while traveling from Washington D.C. to Boston, I pointed my camera out the Amtrak train window and began capturing blurred photos of the passing landscape. Of particular interest to me were the homes built near the tracks by developers in a single style. Although the train passed these developments quickly, allowing little time to view a single home, the homes that followed the first proved to be substantially similar. Viewing these homes in quick succession, absent of detail due to motion blur, resulted in a kind of averaged uniformity. Although I have continued to work from photos captured in transit, in 2012 I began sourcing imagery from Google&trade Street Views as well. Whereas satellite imagery offers a unique bird's eye view of places, Street Views offers a pedestrian view that enables one to travel virtually to any location that Google&trade has previously visited. As with the transit photos, I've been attracted to images that reflect a sort of standard ubiquity that can be found many places.


In 2012, after traveling virtually to Rio de Janeiro and Sao Paulo, Brazil, via Google&trade Street Views, I built a HO scale model of a favela. Although the model is not a direct representation of any particular favela, it is reflective of the traits that I find most compelling: stacked, simple structures, which bear strong resemblance to one another. However, unlike previous work, which has tended to focus on planned environments, the favelas were built outside any urban plan, and were built over time. The favela, as subject, gains additional interest in light of revitalization plans that will evict favela residents and replace these informal communities with new planned construction.