J. Kirk Richards
Figurative artist J. Kirk Richards is becoming increasingly known for his accomplishments as a painter of Judeo-Christian themes. While not all of his paintings are overtly religious, the majority of his themes stem from spiritual ideas and narratives.
Kirk was born near Brigham Young University, the fourth of eight musical children. He attributes much of his love for the arts to an early emphasis on musical training in the home. As a teen, his interests turned from music to visual arts. He took private lessons from artist Clayton Williams to supplement his public school studies. Upon graduation, Richards was accepted into the B.Y.U. art program where he studied with artists Bruce Smith, Hagen Haltern, Gary Barton, James Christensen, Wulf Barsch, Joe Ostraff, and others.
Kirk served a two-year church mission in the areas surrounding Rome, Italy. On occasional breaks, he took advantage of opportunities to visit great Italian masterpieces. Among other things, the experience influenced his palette, which often consists of subdued browns and rusts.
Kirk took a break from University studies to briefly apprentice with Swiss-born symbolist Patrick Devonas. Richards attributes his learning of classical realist skills to the instruction he received from Devonas in Princeton, New Jersey.
Kirk's artwork has been featured in various shows and publications, including the BYU Museum of Art "Beholding Salvation: The Life of Christ in Word and Image" show and accompanying book, Lee Groberg's PBS Document. . .