Richmond Art Center Richmond Art Center

The Teacher Is Artist: Studio/AIC Faculty Show


This exhibition showcases and celebrates the diverse talents of the Richmond Art Center teaching artists who inspire thousands of students in our Studio and Art in the Community programs.

Pictured above: Joyce Shon, Marisa Burman, Sofie Siegmann, Claire Siepser

Marvin Lipofsky: Molten Matter/Fantastic Form

A leading figure in the world of glass, Marvin Lipofsky was instrumental in establishing and promoting the California Studio Glass Movement. This exhibition moves from early work through phases of formal exploration and aesthetic mastery.

The Richmond Art Center is pleased to be able to present this survey of Marvin Lipofsky (1938 -2016) offering a view of an artist who reached into molten matter and emerged with a striking array of fantastic forms.

The 21st Annual Art of Living Black

collagetaolbThe Richmond Art Center is proud to host the only annual exhibition in the Bay Area to exclusively feature regional artists of African descent. Now in its 21st year, we look to some of the deeply resonating art presented in this annual tradition of spotlighting the most extraordinary and striking work of the moment.

The Art of Living Black was founded by the late sculptor Jan Hart-Schuyers and late painter Rae Louise Hayward after their realization that black artists were not being represented by galleries in any significant way. This year’s exhibition will showcase a broad range of works by more than 75 artists from throughout the Bay Area.

Pictured above: Nyé Lyn Tho, Gene Dominique, Justice Renaissance

Scheduled artists talks

Exhibiting artists: Saturday, February 4, 12-2pm

Special talk with Richard Mayhew: Saturday, February 11, 12-2pm

Annual Members Show

Main and West Galleries

Member’s Exhibition

The Annual Members’ Exhibition opens our summer with the sights and textures of the diverse work of our members. We have highlighted the following artists to exhibit in greater depth: Francesca Borgatta, Susan Spann, John Wehrle, and Erin M. Wheeler. 

Members’ Spotlight Talk
Saturday, June 25, 12 – 2 pm

Top row: Susan Spann, Francesca Borgatta
Bottom row: John Wehrle, Erin M. Wheeler

Making Our Mark

As the Richmond Art Center celebrates its 80th Anniversary year, it is preparing a major exhibition in tribute to its history and its mission. The exhibition, Making Our Mark, looks to artists who have had a history with the Art Center: artists who have exhibited, supported, and enriched the programs over the years. In selecting these artists, we reflect on the scope of interest—media as richly varied as painting, ceramics, fiber, sculpture, and photography—and themes as diverse as the cultural backgrounds at the foundation of the community.

We have also asked each of the invited artists to put forward a younger artist: someone whom they have taught or mentored or whose work they have felt should be shown and promoted. This, too, is in line with our history and our mission—giving voice to new artists and opening the galleries to new visions.

Some of the invited artists, including Jim Melchert, Hung Liu, Squeak Carnwath, and Lia Cook, had their very first exhibitions at the Richmond Art Center and have over the years served as the core of the Bay Area art community, teaching, mentoring, and lighting a path for younger artists. And for some of the younger artists, this exhibition presents one of the first major showings of their work.

Turning our attention to materiality, the environment, systems of power and inequality, these artists have followed different modes of expression with a common passion for their art.

These 28 artists participating in Making Our Mark, including William Wiley, Christopher Brown, Mildred Howard, Richard Misrach, Deborah Oropallo, Enrique Chagoya, as well as Allan deSouza, Michael Hall, Johanna Poethig, and Dru Anderson stretch in many directions and their art will occupy the Main, South, and West Galleries in a survey of our history, our present moment, and our anticipation of the future.

David Park and The Human Spirit

David Park: Personal Perspectives


The Human Spirit:
Contemporary Figuration as an Expression of Humanism

David Park: Personal Perspectives contains 37 works on paper in various media executed from the 1930s through 1960, the last year of Park’s life. Drawn from the artist’s estate and private collections, this exhibition includes works shown for the first time. Presented in the intimate South Gallery at the Richmond Art Center, visitors will have an unique opportunity to study his space, compositions, and very personal narratives. 

The exhibition The Human Spirit: Contemporary Figuration as an Expression of Humanism bridges the Art Center’s historical role in presenting formative exhibitions of the Bay Area Figurative artists in the 1950s, The Human Spirit will extend our consideration of legacy to the work of over 20 contemporary Bay Area artists who have expanded the figurative art tradition through paintings, sculpture, photography, video, and performance.  This survey will include the work of Elmer Bischoff, Joan Brown, Terry St. John, Christopher Brown, Charles Garabedian, and Enrique Chagoya. Following a highly personal path with exuberant use of materials and iconography, these artists have forged visual language built on vocabularies including folk, medieval, aboriginal, and outsider art.


Two exhibits celebrate Richmond Art Center milestoneSan Francisco Chronicle/SF Gate, Wednesday, March 23, 2016
Taking Drastic Measures, East Bay Monthy, May 2016

Public Programs

Opening Reception
Saturday, March 19th   5-7 p.m
A first viewing for RAC members and the community, artists, their families and friends. Free and open to the public.

David Park: A Personal Point of View
Sunday, April 3rd 1:30 – 3:30 p.m.
A discussion of the artist’s work and life with the Artist’s daughter, Helen Park Bigelow and family and friends. Free.

Being Human: A Performance by Allan deSouza
Sunday, April 10th   2 p.m.
Artist, critic, and, educator, deSouza presents a performance developed for the exhibition, “The Human Spirit,” with an eye to the rhythms and movements of society and personal experience. Free.

David Park in Perspective: A Radical Choice and a Profound Legacy
Sunday, April 17th 1:30 -3:30 p.m.
In light of Park’s influence on his contemporaries and impact on teaching, art attitudes and practices, and the persistence of values with artists, we bring together a roundtable discussion with artists exhibiting in “The Human Spirit” examining directions within, outside, and against the mainstream in art. Free.

Critical Approaches to Figure and Form, Concept and Content
Sunday, April 24th   1:30 – 3:30 p.m.
A panel discussion and open forum with art critics, writers and historians including DeWitt Cheng, Terri Cohn, and John Zarobell. Free

Modeled and Formed: Drawing from the Model in the Company of Park
Thursday, April 21st   6:30 – 8:30 p.m.
A working session with model open to artists of the community for a Park- inspired evening of drawing.   $25

The Del Sol String Quartet Concert
Saturday, May 7th  2 p.m.
These extraordinary musicians programming music in concert with the exhibition and improvising off individual artwork. Suggested Donation. No one turned away!

Plein Air Perspectives: A Watercolor Workshop  
Sunday, May 15th  12- 2 p.m.
Pack up your paper, watercolors and gouache and join us for painted vistas and views around the Richmond Art Center.

Never Fade Away: Closing Reception for David Park
Sunday, May 22nd   3-5 p.m.
Free and open to the public.

Watch the exhibition videos:

Video 1: David Park: A Personal Point of View
David Park produced a late body of work extraordinary for its focus and direction. In a sharp shift from abstraction to figuration. Park’s move stands out as a re-orientation of radical proportion. Yet it is as a teacher and mentor that Park presides as the cornerstone of an entire art movement and perspective, which came to be known as Bay Area Figurative Art in the 1950s.
Video 2David Park: A Radical Choice and a Profound Legacy
Artists Chris Brown, Kota Ezawa, Allan deSouza and Livia Stein participated in a roundtable discussion as artists exhibiting in The Human Spirit. The panelists examined directions within, outside, and against the mainstream in art, in light of Park’s influence on his contemporaries and impact on teaching, art attitudes and practices, and the persistence of values with artists. This event was moderated by our Director of Exhibitions, Jan Wurm.
Video 3Critical Approaches to Figure and Form
A panel discussion and open forum with art critics, writers and historians John Zarobell and DeWitt Cheng, moderated by our Exhibitions Director Jan Wurm.


The Richmond Art Center is grateful for the generous support and sponsorship of the exhibition provided by Blick Art Materials, Susan and Steven Chamberlin, Jacobs & CO., James Curtis III, Nina and Claude Gruen, Hackett | Mill, Richard Diebenkorn Foundation, Harry W. and Mary Margaret Anderson Charitable Foundation, Oliver and Company, and the Zellerbach Family Foundation.

All images courtesy of Hackett | Mill
Representative of the Estate of David Park.

4th Annual Art in the Community Show


The Art Center’s well-known Art in the Community program brings art-making classes to children and teens to various sites in Richmond, where professional teaching artists design and implement age-appropriate and engaging art experiences. The teachers give feedback, share their work and help students find meaning from art. Students listen to peers, share opinions and learn to constructively critique.

In conjunction with Art in the Community, the Richmond Art Center will present an exhibition with student works from classes taught throughout Richmond in 2015-16. The Art Center continues to maintain the vision that arts education is a crucial component in the creation of a thriving and robust society.

“They (students) were incredibly proud of the show and it had a large effect on the people who were looking at the work.” – Teaching Artist Callen Zimmerman

The exhibition will be showcased in the Community Gallery. The Art in the Community program provides in school and after school art programs at 17 schools, community centers and the Richmond Public Library.

The student shows will coincide with the Art Center’s featured and important companion exhibitions David Park: Personal Perspectives and The Human Spirit: Contemporary Figuration as an Expression of Humanism runs from March 19 – May 22, 2016, and will focus on the historical and aesthetic development of Bay Area figurative art over the past 60 years.

Terry St. John: Close Views & Distant Vistas

This exhibition gives the viewer a deep view into the studio life of the painter Terry St. John. Building figures formed from the air that surrounds them in a space that expands, contracts, and at times, merges with the body, these works present a profound exploration of light and shadow. Maintaining strong ties to Bay Area traditions, St. John has pursued a visual journey investigating the shape of our world. As represented in his vigorous practice, the paint itself brings forth body or bay, house or hill.

Terry St. John Artist Talk

Saturday, June 18, 12 – 2 pm

Image: Aquatic Park, 2000
Oil on canvas

51st WCCUSD Student Art Show

In collaboration with the West Contra Costa School District (WCCUSD), the Richmond Art Center will present the annual West Contra Costa Unified School District Art Show in its Community Gallery.

The Richmond Art Center has a prosperous and long-standing 51-year partnership with the WCCUSD, and this year there are over 300 works of various media and subject matter on displayrepresenting the creative artistic talents of students from middle and high schools  throughout the school district. The Art Center and WCCUSD share an ongoing vision that art education is a crucial component of a thriving and productive society.

There will be a special reception honoring the students and art teachers on Thursday, April 14 from 5-7 pm, which will be free and open to the public.

In addition, numerous art awards will be given out by the Richmond Art Center, the El Sobrante Art Guild, and other community members for the students’ artistic talent and originality.

The West Contra Costa Unified School District has generously sponsored the annual student exhibition.

The student show coincides with the Art Center’s featured  exhibitions: David Park: Personal Perspectiveand The Human Spirit: Contemporary Figuration as an Expression of Humanism focusing  on the historical and aesthetic development of Bay Area’s figurative art over the past 60 years.

Pictured, top row:
Rudy Suarez, Untitled, Kennedy High School
Alex Contreras, Tatanua Inspired Mask, Korematsu Middle School

Bottom row:
Kevin Hoac, Burger Fries & Milk Shake, El Cerrito High School
Karla Cadena, Adinkra Cloth, Pinole Valley High School

Our Town Juried Exhibition

“Our Town” Juried Exhibition 

The people and places which mark a town as “Our Town” are as varied as our lives.

The histories and generations of schools and teachers, shops and customers, workplaces and co-workers, these populate our days.

As the Richmond Art Center reflects on its 80th Anniversary, we are asking for your views, impressions, thoughts on what makes a place unique, what gives a place its identity, what meaning can be drawn from experience, association, or memory. We invite artists to show us their art reflecting their town, our town, a better town.

Juror: Jack Fischer, director of the vibrant Jack Fischer Gallery in San Francisco, brings a unique point of view to this selection. Always fresh and direct in his response to art, Fischer extends a multi-textured and open approach to “Our Town.”

Image: Christ’s Entry into Brussels, James Ensor, 1888.


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Richmond, California 94804

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