The photographic artist Randy Richmond has two concurrent exhibits on display now in the Quad Cities: Verisimilitude in the Lewis Gallery at the Figge Art Museum in Davenport, and The Set Table: Forks on the Left, Metaphors on the Right at the Quad City Arts’ gallery in Rock Island.
Featuring 10 large-format photographs inspired by Western art historical traditions, the Figge exhibit displays Randy Richmond’s finished, polished work which re-imagines the still-life in a thoroughly modern and complex way. His arrangements of taxidermy animals and found objects are carefully arranged on wooden tables and pedestals, photographed in luminous light against natural backgrounds including Nahant Marsh.
In contrast, the exhibit at the Quad City Arts’ Rock Island gallery consists of a series of playful, preparatory photographs or “sketches” made in the process of composing his finished works. The photographs here are mounted against black background paper, on which Randy Richmond has written a series of informative and often hilarious comments engaging the viewer and explaining his thought process. Ideally viewed in close succession, these two exhibits give important insight into the artist’s intent and why his allegorical and thought-provoking work was created.
Listen to our conversation here with the artist about his love of our natural environment, the inspiration behind his work, and why he feels it is important to encourage critical thinking from the viewer.
You can view more of Randy Richmond’s work and access his blog on his website.
The Set Table at the Quad City Arts’ gallery in Rock Island (1715 2nd Ave) closes on Dec 6, 2019, while Verisimilitude is up through Jan 5, 2020 at the Figge Art Museum in Davenport (225 W. 2nd St).