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 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.
The Collections of Hobart and William Smith Colleges contain many original works of art in media such as drawing, painting, prints, sculpture, photography, and decorative objects. Images of the pieces in the Collections are available on Artifact (artifact.hws.edu) for members of the Colleges community. The Collections are particularly strong in works on paper from the nineteenth through the twenty-first centuries. The Collections provide students, faculty, scholars, and a broad regional community the opportunity to study and enjoy original works of art. Works of art from the Collections are regularly utilized for exhibition, classroom, and research purposes. Students actively participate in all aspects of collection management, learning museum standards of art handling and registration, assisting with the installation of exhibitions and campus displays, as well as conducting research for curatorial purposes and educational programs.