2 Albemarle Street
27 November – 21 December 2019
Connaught Brown is delighted to be holding the exhibition Paul Richards Pastels: Celebrating 70 in honour of Paul Richards’ 70th birthday. Richards has had an acclaimed career: a founding member of the Nice Style group with Bruce McLean, exhibiting at Tate and the Henry Moore Institute amongst others, a highly influential tutor at the Slade School of Fine Art with pupils including Cecily Brown and works in the Arts Council collection.
This will be Richards’ thirteenth solo exhibition at the gallery and the first display of his new body of pastel drawings that delve deep into the psyche of both his inanimate and animate sitters.
Painting only those he feels a connection with, the show is a collection of people and objects Richards wishes to take with him to the next life. He creates works that are simultaneously truthful and subjective, depicting what is before him with physical accuracy while also exposing their personality as he sees it, and the emotional connection between himself and his sitter.
Similarly to his portraits, Richards’ still lifes depict the objects and animals alone, allowing them to be given their due attention and hold their own space.
Only after creating an oil sketch and then a terracotta mould does Richards begin his pastel drawings. By repeatedly studying every angle he captures their essence in images that border upon abstraction through their seemingly spontaneous marks. Like in his oil paintings, with these pastel works he uses readymade colours allowing himself to own both the colours and the surface they are on.
Richards joins a long list of distinguished artists who have taught at Slade School of Fine Art including Lucian Freud, Euan Uglow and Frank Auerbach, and has similarly developed a distinctive style in which to explore the body and still lifes.
Image: Paul Richards, Self Portrait, 2019, Pastel on watercolour paper, 22 7/8 x 19 3/4 in, 58 x 50 cm