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Richard Artschwager

STEVEN HOLL

I LOVE TO WORK in the haptic realm and I’m very invested in the rich, authentic materiality of things like wood and concrete, so I hate plastic. I have to admit, then, that in some ways I disliked the first works of Richard’s that I saw, which were his Formica furniture pieces. I hated the idea of a sculpture just being this big Formica thing. But as I kept looking, I was forced to reconsider. Richard used what I thought were disgusting materials, but his wry, iconoclastic sense transformed them. In a way, his work is about inversion: Everything you think you know gets turned on its side. As he once said, “Sculpture is for the touch, painting is for the eye. I wanted to make a sculpture for the eye and a painting for the touch.” That’s pure Richard.

After that first encounter I knew I had to talk to him about his work, and I was fortunate to develop a close relationship with him

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