David Zukas has been an artist and educator for over twelve years traveling and studying regions most affected by the African Diaspora from its origins in West Africa to final destinations in the Americas such as Haiti . His most profound learning experience as an artist was serving as a Peace Corps Volunteer in Ghana . He taught in the Ghanaian public schools and helped to develop markets for local artisan work. The culture of the Ewe people is now woven like kente cloth into his artwork. Africa is a predominant theme in his work.
David finds his imagery and reality through regal beauty in common tasks or in the lives of the proletariat. Women often emerge as the backbone for peasant scenes. Strength and endurance in everyday life serve as fodder for subject matter. Whether the symbolism changes or not is of no consequence, so long as the message remains the importance in suffering and struggling of the masses.
His current series of paintings are presented on doors, inspired by a visceral experience he had while contemplating the concept of the "Door of No Return", the representational door that slaves passed through before being sent to the new world. Traditionally one thinks of a door as a restraint or a barrier. David states that he has been thinking of them as a gateway, portal, vestibule, or a threshold we must physically and emotionally pass through in order to better comprehend ourselves.