My name is Barbara Richards. I am the sole owner of an Italian Art Gallery & Boutique. I am an independent art dealer/curator and import buyer. I have recently designed a line of new jewelry called “Fishers Jewelry” which I believe is absolutely gorgeous.
I have loved, and will continue to love, discovering new & emerging European artists by buying, selling and displaying their works. International art is my passion and so are the artists.
I was trained in textile and design at Moorhead Tech in Moorhead, Minnesota. I am a published writer and have a Bachelors Degree in Management from CCU in Colorado Springs. Colorado. I also have a degree from the Int’l Air Academy in California as an airline/travel specialist. My favorite thing is to travel. I find that when you act on your increasing need to discover a new source of inspiration for your work, you must escape. My advice is quite simple: just take a trip. It will truly inspire. Trust me.
Growing up, the very first painting to ever influence me hung on our dining room wall, visible at all times, presiding over each meal. When speaking of this painting, I’ve always referred to it as, “An Old Man Praying at the Dinner Table,” but I have come to find out that the painting is entitled, “Grace.” The man in the photo is Charles Wilden. Photographed by Eric Enstrom at his studio in Bovey, Minnesota in 1918. Later, Enstroms’ daughter, Rhoda Nyberg, began hand-painting the photo in oils. This painting has always spoken to my heart: “This man doesn’t have much of earthly goods, but he has more than most people because he has a thankful heart.”
I have an incredible unexplainable passion for Vincent Van Gogh and his work. I have a collection of his prints, that I am embarrassed to say how many and I keep collecting them. I’ve not only been influenced and inspired by Postimpressionism, Impressionism and Expressionism paintings but also those of the Romanticism and Renaissance eras. I can enjoy the dark and gloomy earth colors just as much as a the bright hues. Oh, the palettes of the masters! Just give me anywhere from the 1400’s to the late 1800’s, preferably in Italy; Michelangelo, Leonardo da Vinci, Raphael or France; Monet, Picasso, Van Gogh, Gauguin.
In March of 2012, a painting dismissed for years as the work of an unknown artist was identified recently as a piece by Vincent Van Gogh. It is entitled, “Still Life with Meadow Flowers and Roses” and has hung in the Kroeller-Mueller Museum in the town of Otterlo, in the eastern Netherlands, since 1974. Doubts over its authorship have gone on for decades but it was officially confirmed! The world is a much better place now knowing that Vincent had yet another painting to share with those of us who love his work. “I can’t change the fact that my paintings don’t sell. But the time will come when people will recognize that they are worth more than the value of the paints used in the picture.” – Vincent
UPDATE: Causing a buzz is the discovery of another new painting by Van Gogh in September of 2013. The painting, titled “Sunset at Montmajour,” was identified by the Van Gogh Museum in Amsterdam after it spent years in a Norwegian attic being attributed to another painter. The discovery of the painting makes it the first FULL-SIZE Van Gogh to be discovered since 1928. Che emozione!
My grandfather was the only one in my family, as far as I know of, to have painted. I hope one day to follow in his footsteps. I might be off to a good start. I’m inspired. I have subjects. I know my medium. I just have to get it out and on the canvas. “Just slap anything on when you see a blank canvas staring you in the face like some imbecile. You don’t know how paralyzing that is, that stare of a blank canvas is, which says to the painter, ‘You can’t do a thing’. The canvas has an idiotic stare and mesmerizes some painters so much that they turn into idiots themselves. Many painters are afraid in front of the blank canvas, but the blank canvas is afraid of the real, passionate painter who dares and who has broken the spell of `you can’t’ once and for all.” – Vincent
I will continue in my travels searching for and promoting talented European artists by buying and selling their art. La vita è bella. Deve essere vissuta.