David Michael Bates is an American artist, who was born in, and continues to reside in, Dallas, Texas. He received a BFA from Southern Methodist University in 1975 and an MFA from the same institution in 1978.
He is best known for his paintings of the Grassy Lakes region of Faulkner County, Arkansas, and the Gulf Coast. He also produces hand-painted sculptures in bronzes, aluminum, and wood. Whether painting on canvas or on his sculptures, Bates's work is characterized by bold, thick, lush brush strokes. Butchering the Hog, in the collection of the Honolulu Museum of Art, demonstrates the artist's use of bold broad brush strokes, in a way that is reminiscent of Naïve art.
Public collections holding works by Bates include the Art Museum of Southeast Texas, Carnegie Museum of Art, the Corcoran Gallery of Art, the Dallas Museum of Art, the High Museum of Art, the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, the Honolulu Museum of Art, the Metropolitan Museum of Art, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the Smithsonian American Art Museum, and the Whitney Museum of American Art.