With a career spanning more than half a century, French painter Alain Richard is known for his expressionist body of work at a time when his contemporaries were experimenting in figurative representations, pop art, and hyperrealism. Richard’s work is often compared to the precursory Die Brücke movement due to the expression of authentic emotion through heightened color and simplified forms. However, Richard’s highly recognizable body of work creates its own sublime expression so distinct that one might easily surpass categorizing his work into a particular genre in favor of saying, “It is Richard.”
Characterized by elongated figures, sculptural shapes, and geometric composition, Richard’s works are often populated by highly stylized, enigmatic female figures placed in the foreground to create tension. Each canvas is further charged by an emotive color palette and bold, expressive brushstrokes to convey deep emotions, humor, or irony. His evocative oil paintings create an intimate reaction that cannot truly be translated into words, but rather discerned viscerally and with individual reception.
From 1960-1964, Richard attended Raspail Academy and then Notre-Dame-des-Champs Academy, where he befriended distinguished artists Henri Goetz and Christine Boumeester. Beginning in 1964, Richard presented dozens of exhibits over the next 50 years throughout France, in Tokyo, and in the United States. Notable accolades include the Grand Prix of the Sal des Artistes Français (1970), the Grand Prix de Criticism in Paris, and the Picasso Prize at UNESCO.
During his final years, Richard donated a large number of his works to local museums, including 80 paintings to the Camille Claudel Museum in Nogent-sur-Seine; 45 paintings to the city of Troyes for the future Museum of Modern Art; and a number of paintings to his hometown of Thuisy and nearby Estissac. His final exhibition was in February 2016 at l'Arrivage Gallery in Troyes.