Wednesday, May 27, 2009

RENE RICARD: The Torturer's Apprentice

"The George Sanders of the Lower East Side,
Rex Reed of the art
—Andy Warhol

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RENE RICARD is an American poet and painter. Since the early 1970s, Ricard has been one of America's most controversial arbiters of taste. Early on Ricard was one of the major superstars of Andy Warhol’s Factory. He appeared in such classic Warhol films as Kitchen and Chelsea Girls. As a performer, Ricard was a founding participant in the Theater of the Ridiculous, collaborating with John Vaccaro and Charles Ludlam.

In 1979 t
he Dia Art Foundation published Ricard's first book of poems Rene Ricard 1979-1980 styled on the Tiffany Christmas catalogue. By the early 1980s Ricard achieved status in the art world through his influential essays. His cover articles in ArtForum magazine helped to catapult the careers of many artists such as Keith Haring and Francesco Clemente to the forefront of the 80’s New York art scene. Ricard’s 1981 ArtForum piece The Radiant Child brought Jean-Michel Basquiat to fame. In Julian Schnabel's biopic, Basquiat, Ricard was played by actor Michael Wincott.

The majority of Ricard's poems are now created in the form of paintings. His 2008 UK painting exhibition at Scream Gallery was curated by art dealer Vito Schnabel.

Ricard's latest work The Torturers Apprentice opens next week in Andy Spade's New York Half/Gallery.

June 5 - July 8
208 Forsyth Street
New York • NY • 10079


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