Jim Richard | Artists’ Chronicles: 2020

Jim Richard’s paintings are executed with uncommon elegance and subtlety and are in the long tradition of the rendering of domestic interiors. Richard creates a unique, private universe with its own instantly recognizable mixture of wild imagination and rigorous law and order. The artist’s treatment imbues his period rooms with social ironies often by providing a melancholy yet trenchant social parody through the imposition of startlingly modernist sculpture into beautiful yet disturbing settings. The interiors feature period furniture, kitsch objects, and works of art usually with a modernist flair. Formal rigor and clean line are always evident in Richard’s work. The artist’s paintings are executed with uncommon elegance and subtlety. Richard freely mixes styles and aesthetics: the high with the low, the pretentious with the sincere, the mundane with the exotic.

In 2016 Richard started a series of works using Flashé paint poured onto Yupo paper, a series that continues to this day. This offers a sense of immediacy and loss of control that is not so present in his signature style of carefully layered flat surfaces done with a brush. The poured vinyl paint, when dried on the surface of the non-absorbant Yupo, takes on a playful look that somewhat resembles playdough. He is now using this method to do works on stretched linen as well as the Yupo.

The artist peruses magazines and other print materials for visual examples of wall treatments, furniture, and upholstery. The collected references are fused and then adorned with imagined fine art paintings and sculpture, conceiving elegant yet dissonant interior and exterior spaces. Richard also frequently creates small-scale collages made up of found images superimposed with uncharacteristically organic painted works of art.

Jim Richard received his M.F.A. from the University of Colorado. He has exhibited at the Whitney Museum, the Guggenheim Museum in New York, the New Orleans Museum of Art, and the Museum of the Twentieth Century in Vienna, Austria. In 2004, he was awarded the Joan Mitchell Foundation Award in Painting, and in 2006, the Pollack-Krasner Foundation award. He is in numerous collections including The Museum of Fine Arts, Houston, Houston, TX; the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, New York, NY; the Collection of Beth Rudin DeWoody; the Ogden Museum of Southern Art, New Orleans, LA; and the New Orleans Museum of Art, New Orleans, LA. He is a professor emeritus of Painting at the University of New Orleans.