E. David Dornan was born in Helper, Utah in 1954. Dornan paints recognizable objects into abstractions of space, surface, and shape through countless brushstrokes. He lives and has an artist colony in Helper, Utah.
Dornan received his BFA from the University of Utah (1976) and his MFA from Arizona State University (1982). He has been an instructor for the University of Utah art and art history department faculty since the early 1980s.He was an instructor for University of Utah/Snowbird Summer Art Institute and the University of Utah summer arts program (1977, 1978, and 1979).
Because Dornan believes that art should communicate more directly with its viewer, he moved away from abstract art. Dornan's work combines western academic theory with modernism. His painting is characterized by the tension created between recognizable objects and a two-dimensional field comprised of brushstrokes. Examples of his work are Chair (1983), Big Blue(1999), and Filigree (2000).