If writing is thinking and discovery and selection and order and meaning, it is also awe and reverence and mystery and magic.
— Toni Morrison, "The Site of Memory"



Kenturah Davis is an artist working between Los Angeles, New Haven and Accra (Ghana). Her work oscillates between various facets of portraiture and design. Using text as a point of departure, she explores the fundamental role that language has in shaping how we understand ourselves and the world around us. This manifests in a variety of forms including drawings, sculpture and performances. Davis was commissioned by LA Metro to create large-scale, site-specific work that will be permanently installed on the new Crenshaw/LAX rail line, opening in 2020. Her work has been included in institutional exhibitions in Africa, Asia, Australia and Europe. Davis earned her BA from Occidental College and MFA  Yale University School of Art. Davis is an inaugural artist fellow at NXTHVN and a DAMLI fellow at the Cleveland Museum of Art.


Curriculum Vitae



Yale School of Art (New Haven, CT), MFA (2018)

Occidental College (Los Angeles, CA), B.A. in Art History and Visual Arts, Cum Laude

Occidental College Off-Campus Study Program, American University (Washington, DC)



“Blur in the Interest of Precision” - Matthew Brown Los Angeles (Los Angeles, CA) 2019.

“Narratives and Meditations” - Papillion (Los Angeles, CA) 2014.

“sonder” - Papillion Institute of Art (Los Angeles, CA) 2013.

“euphemisms” - Curve Line Space Gallery (Los Angeles, CA) 2011.



"Kenturah Davis + Desmond Lewis" - Crosstown Arts, Presented by Seed Space and Delta Axis (Memphis, TN) 2019

"Plumb Line: Charles White and the Contemporary" - California African American Museum (Los Angeles, CA) 2019

"Portraits" - Foxy Productions (NYC, NY) 2019

"Block Party" - Jenkins Johnson Gallery (NYC, NY) 2018

"Way Out Now" - Diane Rosenstein (Los Angeles, CA) 2018

"Kaleidescope" - Kravetz|Wehby (NYC, NY) 2018

"Linked in Tradition, Inspiring in Vision: A Selection of Works by African American Women Artists" - Robert and Frances Museum of Art (San Bernadino, CA) 2017

"Black Joy" - Yale University. (New Haven, CT) 2016

"Southland" - Charlie James Gallery. (Los Angeles, CA) 2016.

“We Must Risk Delight” – Accademia di Belle Arti di Venezia, Venice Biennale (Venice, Italy) 2015.

"African Electronics" - CHALÉ WOTE Street Art Festival (Accra, Ghana) 2015.

“The Silence of Ordinary Things” – The Mistake Room. (Los Angeles, CA) 2015.

“I Just Want the Paper” - The Mine Factory. (Pittsburgh, PA) 2014.

“i:23” - The Yokohama Triennial. (Yokohama, Japan) 2014

“An American Water Margin” - Ucity Museum at Guangzhou Academy of Fine Arts, (Guangzhou, China) 2014

“OPEN” - Papillion (Los Angeles, CA) 2014.

“Interface: Art/Fashion/Anti-Fashion” - Cal State Long Beach (Long Beach, CA) 2013.

“Mas Attack” - Torrance Art Museum (Torrance, CA) 2013.

“125th Anniversary Alumni Show” - Occidental College, Weingart Gallery (Los Angeles, CA) 2012.

“Mis-Design” Ian Potter Museum, University of Melbourne (Melbourne, Australia) 2011.

“panelshop/Design Loves Art” Pacific Design Center (Los Angeles, CA) 2011.

"Expanding the Matrix" - Occidental College's Weingart Gallery (Los Angeles, CA) 2010.

“smockshop Berlin” Sprüth Magers Gallery (Berlin, Germany) 2009.

“smockshop High Desert Test Sites CB08” California Biennial (Joshua Tree, CA) 2008.



“Sonder” – Crenshaw/LAX project, LA METRO. (Los Angeles, CA) 2015-2019.

One of fourteen selected artists to create site-specific, integrated artworks for the new Crenshaw/LAX Metro Line.


“Four Women” - Alliance Française Accra Mural series (Accra, Ghana) 2014

Commissioned mural by Alliance Française to commemorate International Women’s Day.


“Métamorphose” - L’Exposition AD Interieurs (Paris, France) 2013.

Five commissioned portraits by architect, Elliott Barnes, and featured in his installation at the AD Interieurs Metamorphose exhibition.


“Ray Charles America” - A&E Documentary:

Commissioned drawing of Ray Charles, featured in the television documentary, Ray Charles America. The filmed which has aired on the Biography channel and has been featured in two film festivals, shows the creation of the artwork in the artist's studio. Directed by documentary filmmaker, Alexis Manya Spraic.



A collective founded by artist, Andrea Zittel, creating interpretations of her utilitarian garment designs called smocks. They were exhibited in a series of “pop-up” shops.