This fall the New Orleans Museum of Art is pleased to present a solo exhibition of the paintings by renowned New Orleans artist Jim Richard. Entitled Jim Richard: Make Yourself At Home, this will be the artist’s first solo exhibition at NOMA since 1978. The show will focus on the subject Richard is best known and admired for: interior scenes bursting with works of art and colorful décor. The twelve paintings on display will provide an exceptional opportunity to view a large range of the artist’s work covering the last twenty years of his career. Make Yourself At Home will also debut a number of paintings that have never been shown to the public before.
Born in 1943 in Port Arthur, Texas, Richard is best known for his paintings of modernist works of art situated in richly decorated and ominously claustrophobic home interiors. Since 1977 Richard has been producing domestic scenes adorned with modern paintings and sculptures. Mining magazines, books, and advertisements for examples of wallpaper, furniture, upholstery, and artwork, Richard fuses these elements into invented residential spaces. In his paintings and collages, works of art compete against loud examples of décor. His work straddles the line between celebrating and critiquing kitsch and rampant consumer culture.
Richard has a long history of exhibiting at NOMA, having been included in ten exhibitions over the past decades, including five iterations of the juried New Orleans Triennial (more than any other artist in its history). As a professor of painting at the University of New Orleans for the past thirty-seven years, Richard played a pivotal role in maintaining the strength of the Fine Arts program at UNO, which for several decades has been a fount of artistic activity in New Orleans. Through UNO Richard influenced a generation of students, including painters Wayne Gonzales and Peter Halley, and sculptor Lucky DeBellevue.