Richard Slechta’s art practice examines the paradox between structure and nature, between the way images keep us constrained and still invite infinite perspectives.
A major tenet of his work is looking at the behaviors of natural forces: pressures of geological formations, the influence of gravity, and the flow of currents. In essence, he’s looking at environmental systems to appreciate their volatile yet interconnected dependencies.
The language of light has been a defining influence on every aspect of Richard’s work. The artists of the California Light and Space movement reduced emerging technologies to its minimal components, seeking the sublime experience of light. Continuing in this approach, he uses the behavior of light and its interactions with matter to look closely at the symbiosis of natural forces, creating works that emphasize reciprocity, fluidity, and interconnectivity.
Using one of the first camera-less photographic processes developed, his light-based work fuses together fields of photography and painting. Using photography’s raw materials, the works are created with focused bursts of light onto emulsion-based photo paper. The resulting sketches of light are filled with darting movements, crossing trajectories, and colliding forces.
Richard’s work has been exhibited in museums and galleries throughout the United States, as well as Switzerland, Italy and Japan. In 2018, his solo exhibition, Cascades was shown at the Museum of Art at the University of Arizona. In 2017, Richard was selected to be part a museum survey of photographic artists who challenge the ideas of what photography is and can be. Photography Expanded: Distinct Approaches at the California Center for the Arts in Escondido presented the relationship of contemporary modes of creation alongside photography icons such as Ansel Adams, Dorothea Lange and Eleanor Antin. Richard exhibited 17 works, including a multi-panel mural-scale piece.
In 2015, three additional solo exhibitions exploring the intersection of art and technology were held at the Museum of Arts & Sciences, Macon, GA; Science Spectrum Museum, Lubbock, TX; and, the International Museum of Art & Science, McAllen, TX. Concurrently, Richard had a panoramic installation presenting a visual theater spanning across the gallery walls of Gallery 825 in Los Angeles (2015). In 2014, he held his first solo museum exhibition, Inherent Trajectories, at the Mattie Kelly Fine Arts in Florida.
Based in Los Angeles, Richard received a BFA in Photography from the School of Visual Arts in New York City and a degree in 3D Digital Production & Lighting from the Gnomon School of Visual Effects in Los Angeles. His works are represented in several museum and private collections. He is also a digital visual effects artist, having been a Lighting Technical Director on several of the biggest movies and games.