Daryl Childs’ earliest memories are rooted in the rural landscapes of upstate New York, specifically the vast western valley of the upper Appalachian Mountain range of western New York State. Growing up on a dairy farm, Daryl remembers the smell of the first cut of clover, the sight of his grandfather plowing the fields and the sound of snow crunching underfoot. At a young age he identified visually with Andrew Wyeth’s naturalistic rural images, as well as the narrative illustrations of Norman Rockwell. Through his early sketches of faces of friends, relatives and personal narrative scenarios, Daryl began to develop his keen observational and representational abilities. In addition to his affinity for figurative and narrative drawing, Daryl also sharpened his skills as an architectural draftsman during a high school internship program offered through a local community college. Even though his artistic talents went largely unnoticed by his parents and teachers, Daryl was determined to pursue a career as an artist.
During the Vietnam War and the social upheaval of the sixties, the impact of photojournalism left an indelible mark on the young artist’s perception of the world. Using pencil, charcoal, conte’-crayon and pastels for large-scale situational drawings and portraiture, Daryl concentrated on mastering the essentials of contouring, tonal contrast and spatial relationships. He developed his own style of objective accuracy, which allowed him to transcend reportorial realism and examine tension between visual facts and underlying interpretations or meanings. Daryl began to explore themes that would remain with him for many years thereafter: the internalization of social drama or conflict and the fragility and pathos of human existence. It was also at this time that he began moving away from Wyeth and Rockwell and looking more towards Bacon and Kitaj, among others.
Graduating from high school in 1974, Daryl immediately enlisted for a four-year tour in the USAF in order to become eligible for the GI Bill, which provides veterans with financial aid for college/university tuition.
In 1982, Daryl earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree from the University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona. His course/studio work included undergraduate/graduate courses in history, art history, studio art, non-silver photography and, ultimately, printmaking.
During Daryl’s senior year at the university, he was given the opportunity to teach undergraduate classes in intaglio and lithographic printmaking as well as participating and conducting critiques in masters painting, printmaking and multi-media programs. This ultimately led to assuming management of Presstime Studios, the university’s graduate printmaking studios. It was at this time that he also leased a storefront gallery in downtown Tucson, ‘Art: After Six Gallery’ in which he organized exhibitions, workshops, performances and maintained a painting studio.
In subsequent years Daryl has been employed in a multitude of gallery positions such as large volume wholesale/retail art and framing design and sales, gallery management, gallery director, owner and operator of a custom framing studio, art consultant and, ultimately, gallery owner representing over 60 artists. Throughout the years engaged in a multitude of toils and tasks Daryl has diligently – relentlessly – pursued his studio work, producing works on paper, paintings, accepting numerous commissions as well as always looking to expand his exhibition history and representation.
In 2000, Daryl relocated from Tucson to Scottsdale, AZ where he opened a painting and printmaking studio. After a brief stint as a gallery representative with Bentley Gallery in Scottsdale he, along with business partner Michael Costello, opened Costello-Childs Contemporary After 10 very successful years Daryl made the decision to sell his interest in the gallery and return full-time to studio work. Daryl presently splits his time between his Paradise Valley studio and his home in Sunshine Beach, Queensland, Australia.