At the time we decided to acquire Richard we were looking for contemporary artists who in some way retained qualities of the ten French painters whom we’d enjoyed great success with us for 40 years. They were fauve colorists, color-oriented figure painters. Being French wasn’t part of the requirement.
What attracts me now in Richard’s work is an organized energy–I think his architectural background has something to do with it. Even though his work is representational, it contains some very abstract elements that I find exciting. He has a strong sense of light and dark that I love.
I’m continually attracted to his color combinations, and the energetic movements of sky. There’s the spirit of the place in the painting: You feel the noise, the music, the vibrancy. You feel it with all your senses. Nothing Richard paints ever becomes wallpaper.
The David Findlay Galleries
What occurs to you, after spending some time with Richard’s work, is that while many of his subjects seem fixed and timeless, such as rooftops and streets, they’re rendered in a transitory, almost unstable way. This gives the work a sense of possibility, of being in motion. He paints an instant that will never happen again, yet that is nonetheless captured in a subject that seems immovable.
There is truth in that idea, and he renders it with unique interest and beauty.
David and Sunny Fowler
What strikes me is the boldness of Richard’s reaction to a physical place. There’s so much passion. It’s a world full of life and energy and possibility.
One of my favorite pieces is a house on a hill. Emotionally, when I saw this painting, I had to have it. It called my name, and it called my wallet out of my pocket. It’s a wide-open landscape, with no people. I think it’s the sky I love—and it’s mostly sky. The color, the playfulness of the clouds, their amorphous, ambiguous quality….
Richard’s vision has an irresistible intimacy. What he sees is something from your past, but you’re looking into his psyche: You’re seeing the positiveness and beauty and passion in him. You feel his love of life, of people, you feel his engagement and fascination with the world. I see things I never saw before in this painting, and it affects how I see the real world. I can’t help but go outside and look at the sky and wonder. To see it through his eyes, how it comes to life—it’s inspiring and uplifting.
We selected Richard for our residency program because of the incredibly vibrant way he presents landscape. In terms of both his point of view and use of color, his interpretation is unique. Our program is intensely competitive, but I recognized immediately what a valuable experience it would be for Weir Farm to have Richard.
Weir Farm Art Center
What strikes me first about Richard’s work? The amazing colors and the curved lines, and the unique perspective he brings to his buildings, streets, lampposts, and roads.
At first blush the buildings can seem a little off balance. But in the end, they are what ensure that Richard’s work never gets old. I love those curved buildings and curly lampposts. I also love the way his paintings transport me. I can get lost staring at his work, imagining I am there in Amsterdam or New York City or China. The table with its tulips and Vanity Fair: It’s a simple subject, but from Richard’s perspective it takes on interest and meaning, creating a warm and welcoming space for me.
I especially love “Howard Street.” New York is my home, though I am temporarily relocated on the opposite coast. When I am homesick, I look at “Howard Street” and there I am in downtown Manhattan, rushing to pick up something or get to the subway because I am running late. All the energy comes through, and that picks me up.
Love the spatial elasticity of this. Instead of just the perspective receding and collapsing in on itself we have the foreground–the 3 graces–asserting themselves in almost 3-D …do you remember how Fujichrome red tones used to ‘pop’ like decals on a slide or photo? The bikes hover so lightly amidst such density and gravity.
I always feel a strange nostalgia for grit and garbage and noise when I see your work, Richard. And I mean that in the best way!
Richard Lang Chandler creates for the viewer a transcendent reality where every element of the landscape pulsates with energy and color, and, yet, welcomes her home. His images are a living testament to the beauty of urban spaces -- Lisbon, New York, Amsterdam, Italian villages, and others -- seen through eyes that capture a contemporary, dynamic sense of what it means to be human. His use of color and the exaggeration of natural form is nothing short of magic.
Nancy Hutchens and Michael Fields