Richard Whitten constructs intricate yet expansive
spaces of interior architecture as well as imaginative gadgets and toys. Whitten
applies oil paint and metal leaf to shaped wood panels to create the arches,
pinnacles, and buttresses, which flank seemingly endless passageways. Each
painting is a portal into another world. Uniquely and ornately shaped, rich in
palate and rendered with a great attention to detail; Whitten’s paintings
create a most enticing space for the viewer. A sense of inquisitiveness is
evoked, for the objects, mechanisms and worlds that appear in Whitten’s
paintings appear to be alive, tangible and playful; yet they tease the viewer for
they are unmoving and physically impossible to access.
Whitten earned his MFA from the University of California, Davis and is a graduate of Yale University. His work has been featured in solo and group exhibitions at the Beard Gallery at Wheaton College, Frye Art Museum, Newport Art Museum, New Bedford Museum of Art, and Attleboro Art Museum. He has received a fellowship from the Ballinglen Foundation of Art in Ireland and numerous grants from Rhode Island College, where he is currently a professor of art.