Psych Pastorale: New Paintings by Richard Feaster
Feaster’s practice is grounded in the tradition of American twentieth-century abstract painting. He began painting abstractly in the early 1990’s, producing works noted for their minimal linear patterning and subtly muted palette. Feaster has over the years developed a lexicon of painting techniques emphasizing the primacy of process to produce a body of work with a clean and identifiable aesthetic language. These latest paintings were begun outdoors by pouring large amounts of a solvent onto canvas and immediately spraying metallic silver paint into the flowing pools of liquid. The pigment of the sprayed paint freezes in time the fluid shapes of liquid while also reacting against it, forming unpredictable areas of shadow, depth and reflection as it spreads out over the picture plane. Later, the canvases are developed further in the studio where additional spills, drips and pools of paint are collaged onto the surface of the paintings. The final images are, despite their energetically spontaneous appearance, a hybrid of painting and collage that are realized slowly over time through much consideration.
This exhibition will present paintings that show the full range of this technique in a body of work the artist calls Pastorales, a reference to their creation outdoors. This group of paintings reflects the naturalism of those surroundings. Working out in the open beneath trees and in bright sunlight, shadows and wind became a participant in the making of these works, contributing to a sense of mystery and chance as the paint was applied. Painting titles were taken from pop songs of the psychedelic era, a musical period noted for its introspection and mystery, and which mirrors the artist’s interest in nostalgia, impermanence and reflection on place and time.
Richard Feaster was born in Hagerstown, MD, and attended Birmingham Southern College (BFA), Tulane University (MFA) and the Skowhegan School of Painting and Sculpture. His work has been exhibited internationally and is included in many private and corporate collections. In 2016, he was nominated for a Joan Mitchell Foundation Painters and Sculptors Grant. He lives and works in Nashville, TN.