I was born in Brooklyn, NY in 1949. Following college and graduate school in the late 1960’s, my early explorations included poetry, filmmaking, photography and painting. Over the last three decades, I have arrived at a hybrid practice that both synthesizes my previous efforts and anticipated the revolution of digitally manipulated imagery. Combining photographic imagery with words, collage, drawing, painting, and printmaking into a multi-dimensional visual language, my current work has evolved into a personal visual poetry.

I have exhibited paintings, drawings and photo-based works from 1976 to the present in galleries and museums in the United States and Europe. My 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. My work has been showcased in numerous publications including Still Modern After All These Years, Chrysler Museum, Eyemazing Magazine andInvisible City: Philadelphia and the Vernacular Avant-garde. I 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 my photo-based art with Walt Whitman’s poetry.
In 1979 I founded the Paul Cava Gallery in Philadelphia. Throughout its evolution in various Center City spaces, I exhibited an array of cutting-edge regional and international photography, sculpture and painting, introducing notable and at times, controversial artists – and during my twenty-year run, dramatically enlivening Philadelphia’s cultural conversation. I closed the gallery in 1999 to focus on my personal work.

My most recent book, Corona Interiors, is a collection of photographic works that celebrate light, darkness and being alive, created during lockdown at the height of the pandemic in 2020-2021.

Previoius 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.