Paul Cava was born in Brooklyn, NY in 1949. Beginning his career as an artist in the late 1960’s Cava made his early explorations in college, graduate school and afterwards as a poet, multi-media artist, filmmaker, photographer and painter. Over the last three decades, he arrived at a hybrid practice that both synthesizes his previous efforts and anticipated the artistic potential of digital photography and digitally manipulated imagery. Combining photographic imagery with words, collage, drawing, painting, and printmaking into a multi-dimensional visual language, Cava’s current work has evolved into a personal visual poetry.
As a fine artist Cava has exhibited paintings, drawings and photo-based works from 1976 to the present in galleries and museums in the United States and Europe. His work has been collected by a broad range of private and public institutions, including The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, The Philadelphia Museum of Art, The Princeton University Museum of Art, The Pennsylvania Convention Center, and The Bibliotheque Nationale, Paris. His work has been showcased in numerous publications including Still Modern After All These Years, Chrysler Museum, Eyemazing Magazine and Invisible City: Philadelphia and the Vernacular Avant-garde. Cava was awarded Pennsylvania Council on the Arts grants in 1981 and 1999. In fall 2005, the German publisher Galerie Vevais released Children of Adam, a volume combining Cava’s photo-based art with Walt Whitman’s poetry.
Since the founding of the Paul Cava Gallery in 1979, and throughout its evolution in a variety of Center City spaces until 1999, Cava exhibited an array of cutting-edge regional and international photography, sculpture and painting, introducing notable and at times, controversial artists – and during its twenty year run dramatically enlivening Philadelphia’s cultural conversation.
Cava’s most recent book, Corona Interiors, is a collection of photographic works that celebrate light, darkness and being alive, made at home during lockdown at the height of the pandemic in 2020-2021.
Previous books include:
Paul Cava: Photographs, Collages, Montages, published in 2020.
Walt Whitman and Paul Cava: Children of Adam from Leaves of Grass, released in 2004.