Richard passed away on 15th October 2018. He was a wonderfully talented painter and teacher and a dear friend. He was a great inspiration to us when we started the gallery and is sorely missed.
Richard was born in Upminster in Essex and at the age of 11 began painting and drawing the fishing fleet at Leigh-on-Sea. Encouraged to paint ‘anything’ he was drawn to atmospheric conditions and light effects. Later he studied at Portsmouth, where he developed an interest in figure painting, interiors and portraiture.
He worked as a production design lecturer at the London International Film School but in 2001 he started to make his own images again. Encouraged by his mentor, the late John Bowen, he soon resumed his painting and success followed as his work sold nationally and internationally. He was an elected member of the Royal Institute of Oil Painters and exhibited at the Royal Academy and Royal College of Art. He was Artist in Residence for a year at the Hurlingham Club in London.
Richard’s work is concerned with light and atmosphere and falls within the traditions of artists such as Turner and Sickert. While some of his work was done in the studio, Richard was predominantly an ‘en plein air’ painter and most of his work was, therefore, painted immediately in front of his subject. The challenge of this type of work is in being able to rapidly analyze colour and tone at the same time as capturing the constantly moving drama of the environment. In Richard’s own words:
“A good friend, Sheila Fairman, said to me many years ago, ‘Because I look at so much art, I only stop and have a good look at a piece if I am touched, attracted, or intrigued by it – I don’t bother with the rest.’
As it happened, I adopted this same survival technique, but what I noticed was that the work that affected me so positively was work done in the elements – man pitting himself against nature (thinking Turner and so on). So my paintings are made by my trying to bring together ‘everything’ of myself to the subject of nature, and by seeking out a sort of ‘give and take’ with it – sometimes winning and sometimes not. The goal is to be able to reflect back to myself and others a painting which shares that experience. If the painter intimately connects these two natures (hisand his subjects), a reflection is created that can profoundly affect others”.