The works of Daniel Edwards address celebrity and popular culture in ways that often stir controversy. The release of his art is generally accompanied by a press release. Edwards includes the idea of promotion and associative fame in the marketing of his art.
“Life-session portraiture remains the most pure form of sculptural expression for me, but I am really enjoying other methods for exploring portraiture,” says Edwards, a child of the civil rights era, who came of age as an artist in the time of political correctness. “While I was creating public sculpture commissions, I felt that it was my calling to act as an artist who truly represents political correctness,” says Edwards. As an avid visitor to the National Portrait Gallery at the Smithsonian, Edwards noticed the collection wanting of racial diversity. With the National Portrait Gallery’s requirement of working from life in mind for potential acquisition of the work, Edwards sculpted over the course of ten years approximately 50 portraits of living pioneers from baseball, the Olympics and the Blues.
Yearning to speak about socio-political topics through his work, Edwards decided to turn his process on its head and began doing more provocative work. “The work has been considered controversial, but with social conscience, and the depictions are never done from life. The subjects are accessed from the Internet and media. I often think of my current work as politically incorrect monuments and public sculpture with the Internet as the public space,” says Edwards.
Daniel Edwards works in both practical technique and digital. “Practical is old technology – modeling in clay and wax, for example. Digital is using computer programs. Both methods can be just as exhausting, just as demanding. Each process has its own advantages and disadvantages, so knowing how to work in both worlds provides a pretty broad range of possibilities for the contemporary sculptor,” says Edwards.