Richard Herman (b. 1965) is a self-taught artist who began experimenting with oil painting in his early teens. Having a strong interest in western art history, he initially learned his craft by studying the paintings of the Northern European Renaissance. Seeking to recreate the crisp form and transparent atmosphere seen in panels by artists such as Jan Van Eyck and Rogier Van Der Wyden, he worked out the basic technique of that period, and then applied it to his own themes. This technique involved laying successive layers of tinted glaze over high contrast monochrome under painting. Compositions were based on detailed drawings made from a combination of direct observation and memory.
After working with figure based allegorical scenes in this way for several years, the landscape elements in his paintings came forward as the main subject of his work. In his late twenties, Herman underwent a shift in perspective that brought into focus the dynamic uncertainty of the world around him. Feeling impatient with his medium and wanting to depict this emerging perception, he dispensed with drawing and carefully arranged compositions. Using a spontaneous wet-on-wet approach that drew inspiration from the Chinese and Japanese traditions of painting and calligraphy, he explored a flowing environment of clouds, geology, and watercourses.
His cloud series became a signature motif during this period. Herman’s work over the last decade brings together the lessons of both earlier periods into what has become his mature landscape style. He is now exploring the idea and history of the “Sublime Landscape,” and is once again introducing figures and narrative into some paintings.
- 2014 Calm and Clear 2014, Art Interiors, Toronto
- 2011 Where Prairie meets Mountain, Gibson Fine Art, Calgary, AB
- 2009 Sublime Landscape, The Agnes Bugera Gallery, Edmonton, AB
- 2007 Floating World, Parts Gallery, Toronto ON
- 2007 The New Sublime, Art Interiors, Toronto ON
- 2006 The Promised Land, Agnes Bugera Gallery, Edmonton AB
- 2005 New works, Art Interiors, Toronto ON
- 2004 Landscapes from Memory, Parts Gallery, Toronto ON
- 2002 New Landscapes and Skyscapes, Art Interiors, Toronto ON
- 1996 Calm and Clear, 80 Spadina, Toronto ON
- 2012 Art gallery of Hamilton, Hamilton ON
- 2011 Art gallery of Hamilton, Hamilton ON
- 2008 Lions and Lambs, Parts Gallery, Toronto ON
- 2008 Beauty, The Weiss Gallery, Calgary AB
- 2007 Touching Reality, The Elliot Louis Gallery, Vancouver BC
- 2005 Three Visions of Land and Sky, Agnes Bugera Gallery, Edmonton AB
- 2003 Natural Tendencies, Holland & Holland, New York, NY
- 1997 Blue Space”, 80 Spadina, Toronto ON
- 1996 Metro Convention Center Visitor’s Assoc. Queens Quay Terminal, Toronto ON
- 1988 International Miniature Show Del Bello Gallery, Toronto ON