Three American Painters Engage in a Dialogue on Primitivism and Expression
View Enrico Riley Video
Enrico Riley writes, the new work continues to develop a flexible way of working that allows for many subjects and sources to find their way into my painting language. It has become important for me to take advantage of the ebb and flow of my non-painting life and use that as primary information in my painting practice. Painting for me is formal but the formal decisions have to be deployed through something else: need, desire, or appetite. I find the process of painting challenging and deeply satisfying. Enrico received his Masters of Fine Arts degree from the Yale University School of Art and his Bachelors of Art in visual studies from Dartmouth College. He has been exhibited throughout New England and New York and has been awarded many prestigious awards including the Burke Award and the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship. Enrico’s work can be found in the collections of the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts in Richmond, VA, Dartmouth College in New Hampshire, and the Werner Kramarsky Drawing Collection.
The work of Vermont-based artist (and visual art professor at Dartmouth College) Enrico Riley seems to vibrate with energetic color and line. In these abstract, almost childlike drawings and paintings of figures and faces, what appears to be spontaneous is actually part of a process of slow and deliberate observation. “I am trying to work with the attitude that many sources and types of subject matter can influence me as I work and that this information can be deployed in a nonlinear fashion,” Riley has said of his works. “There are no set rules about color, composition, style or subject matter. Through the process of making, the works are allowed to find what they need to exist.” Previously, the artist has created abstract works based on musical scores, where color and form stand in for rhythm and tone, as well as figureless monochromatic compositions in white.
American, based in Norwich, Vermont