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Friday, January 14, 2011

J. Kirk Richards Exhibit @ Covey Center for the Arts (Provo: Jan 7 - Feb 24)

Contact Information: For Immediate Release
Danae Friel
Covey Center for the Arts
(801) 852-7012
425 W. Center St. Provo, UT 84601

Covey Center for the Arts is pleased to announce that a solo exhibition of figurative artist J. Kirk Richards will be on display in their Eccles Gallery from 7 January until 24 February, 2011.

Between 400 and 500 people attended the opening of the exhibition on Friday, January 7, 2011, which was an unusually high number for a Covey Center art gallery opening, according to Danae Friel, marketing director at the Covey Center.

Deann Morin, assistant general manager at the Covey Center, was especially pleased with the number of people at the opening.

“This is the way a gallery opening ought to be,Åh Morin said. ÅgIt was fun to watch people walk into the lobby (which is where the Eccles Gallery is located) and do double takes before continuing on.Åh

The exhibition features 15 original oil paintings, as well as a series of plaster sculptures, all by Richards.

Of those 15 oil paintings, five use a similar subject, an angel-like figure, and contain in their title ÅgFigure with Wings.Åh The other paintings feature a series of four roadscapes, called ÅgThe Road Ahead,Åh and four studies of Jesus Christ.

Richards said he painted ÅgThe Road AheadÅh during an unsettling time Å\ the peak of the recession.

“There are some very unsettling things in ÅgThe Road Ahead,Åh he said.

In the paintings, which are roughly six by six feet, the road fades into the distance on the left, while the sun is situated to the right of the frame, contrary to what the viewer might desire, according to Richards Å\ that the road would lead to the sun.

“The paintings call for a course redirection, Åg Richards said. ÅgThey are a reminder of the constant need for course correction.Åh

The plaster sculptures' titles contain the phrase Ågtorso with wings,Åh and, like the paintings, also feature angel-like figures as their subjects.

“They are about the dichotomy that exists in all of us between our spiritual and physical nature,Åh Richards said.

David Gomm, who attended the exhibition opening and also has his own work on display in the Covey's Secured Art Gallery, said it was one of the better exhibits the Covey has had in the gallery space.

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“You can never have too many angels,Åh Gomm said. ÅgI really found it to be a very uplifting exhibit.Åh

Richards, a native and current resident of Utah, attended Brigham Young University, where he studied art.

His main concentration is on the human figure and symbolism and metaphor, according to his Web site, www.jkirkrichards.com.

Richards served a two-year mission for the LDS Church in Rome, Italy, where he said he was influenced by Ågthe great Italian masters.Åh

His work has been featured in a number of venues and publications, including the BYU Museum of Art's show, ÅgBeholding Salvation: The Life of Christ in Word and Image;Åh PBS's documentary, called ÅgSweetwater Rescue: The Willie and Martin Handcart Story;Åh and the cover of Jeffrey R. Holland's book, ÅgBroken Things to Mend.Åh

Richards also teaches art in the community, and espouses the idea that Åggreat art is not made with a formula,Åh according to his Web site.

Collections across the nation feature his work, and a number of locations hold private collections of his work, including the LDS Church's Museum of History and Art in Salt Lake, the Springville Art Museum, and the Orem Public Library.

To see the Covey Center's exhibition of Richards's work, visit the Eccles gallery, in the main lobby of the Covey Center, located at 425 W. Center St. in Provo. The gallery is open Monday through Thursday, 10AM to 6PM and Fridays, 10AM to 2PM and during any performance.


The Covey Center for the Arts is Provo's quintessential venue for the fine arts, offering two art galleries, three dance studios, one small black box theatre, and a 670- seat state- of- the- art performance hall. Housed in a beautiful building of 42,000 square feet, the performance hall features a first-class sound system, a 75- foot fly system, a full theatrical lighting system and a full orchestra pit. And to enhance audience members' experience, no seat is more than a measly 60 feet away from the stage. The Covey Center been honored to host world- renowned guest artists on their main stage, including Rockapella, The Beach Boys and
STOMP. The Covey Center opened in 2007 and has continually served both local and national artists since.

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