Based in York since 1984, Richard Barnes has worked in the UK and abroad, producing smaller works and monumental pieces for the arena. Ever interested in the use of colour and space, the surface of the image along with the illusion of what lies behind it, Richard’s work takes on a multitude of settings, from the obvious beauty of the wild and windswept Yorkshire landscape, the richness of a Mediterranean seascape, the desolation of a bombed out tower in a former war zone, to the energy and excitement of the world’s cities, in the day and at night, including that of his home town. These are ever evolving, looking to highlight the sensations of life and light, movement and stillness, the changing and new juxtaposed with the permanent and prevailing history.
When Richard returned to his studio after spending Christmas 2015 in Australia, he found it under three feet of water after the Boxing Day floods, so he decamped to Staithes and spent the rest of the winter painting here while his York studio dried out. The result was a series of beautiful paintings capturing the village in winter at dusk, with the lights coming on in the cottages and reflected in the water.
As well as completing works outside and in situ, the development of Richard’s images often also involves drawing, photographing, printing, working on top of this print, re-photographing, re-printing, re-working, many times over until a final image is arrived at that captures the visual, tactile and haptic nature of the experience of being in a particular place, at that particular time.