kim richardson
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++the paintings of Kim (Keek) Richardson


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"Kim Richardson is one of my favorite living (full of life!) visual artists, an enchantress with a brush. Her paintings are powerfully evocative works that tap the collective unconscious, minimalist yet rich in symbolism: solitary females wrapped in shells or serpents, dark bird-creatures, shamans, trees and water gently laid over rough surfaces. Fragments of vague, forgotten dreams. She speaks to, and from, the heart."

jody franklin 

"A master of mood."

Damian Michaels

"I don't have a lot of money to spend on art but with these tight times even I can see my way to pick up a bit of the real thing."

John Swinton

"...your work reaches that place in that's that little moment without hell."

Anne Buffum




We caught wind of Kim Richardson’s Subi Dura A Rudibus show at Forest Park Community College just in time to add it the most recent Weekend Roundup and dash over there for the opening.

We have been aware of her work for some time, as she has had a hand in organizing periodic group shows in a loft space on Locust near the Schlafly Tap Room over the past few years. Our impressions of her work then, as now, have been largely positive.

The exhibit in the Gallery of Contemporary Art at Forest Park C.C. is Richardson’s first solo show, and its title is a Latinate palindrome whose English translation is “endure rough treatment from uncultured brutes.” Richardson has a knack for clever titles, which, like her paintings, are layered with veiled meanings and self-references.

The paintings are small, delicately rendered oils on found pieces of wood that typically feature a nude female figure associated with symbols or attributes of the natural world, such as a bird, a tree, a shell, a skull, or the moon. It is easy to surmise that these paintings are autobiographical; whether they are or not there appears to be a narrow divide between the artist herself and the figure she paints. Perhaps the woman in the paintings is a personification of Richardson in a realm that exists outside the everyday world, or, to take this thought further, perhaps the artist actually dwells in this realm and her paintings serve as postcards to those of us whose lives are more mundane. That she can elicit this kind of existential perplexity with her deceptively simple iconography is reason enough to take the time to view them.

Many words come to mind in relation to Richardson’s work: cryptic, ethereal, astrological, intuitive, sexual, playful, mythical, gothic, and symbolic are just a few that easily apply. We encourage you to take the time to view this show and form your own vocabulary. Ours is barely sufficient to do this important work its proper justice.

St. Louis Art-Patrol