Born in Massachusetts in 1962, Richard Phillips lives and works in New York. He is known for his strikingly distinctive paintings. Drawn from found imagery, his work deals with the marketability of man, his wishes, ideas, actions, identity, sexuality, politics, and desires. He translates these images into both drawings and paintings, executed through a traditional process. In doing so, he makes use of the iconic quality of pictures, which the media and art use daily –each according to its own agenda. His recent exhibition, Most Wanted, at White Cube in London, for example, featured 10 larger-than-life celebrity portraits set against red carpet step-and-repeat backdrops.
Perhaps more so than any other contemporary painter of his kind, Phillips’ imagery has achieved a level of pop recognition outside of the art world with fashion, media, and film collaborations. He has contributed to the television show Gossip Girl, MAC Cosmetics, The Art Production Fund, and Visionaire. He recently appears as a guest judge on Bravo’s new TV series Work of Art: The Next Great Artist.
Phillips has exhibited his work in many individual and group exhibitions in the U.S. and Europe, including important survey exhibitions and catalogues at Le Consortium, Dijon, in 2004; Kunsteverin in Hamburg in 2002, and Kunsthalle Zurich in Zurich in 2000. His current exhibition of paintings and film is on view at Gagosian Gallery in New York. He is represented in public and private collections such as the Albright -Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY; the Denver Museum, CO; the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, TX; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Museum of Contemporary Art, Miami; UBS Paine Webber Art Collection, New York; San Francisco Museum of Contemporary Art; Tate Modern, London; Van Abbesmuseum, Eindhoven, the Netherlands; and the Whitney Museum of American Art, New York.
Recently Phillips has begun to explore filmmaking and photography as a means of moving beyond found imagery in his paintings. His images have appeared in Elle magazine and Lotus magazine, and will be featured in upcoming issues of Vogue China and Visionaire. He completed his first film entitled Lindsay Lohan in 2011. Phillips considers the film a “motion portrait” of the actress that “at once reveals an emotional awareness of her recent past and, in the most positive terms, expressed the limitless creative potential of her art joined with her unparalleled beauty.” The film premiered at the 2011 Venice Biennale in tandem with his second film, Sasha Grey. His third film will premiere at Art Basel’s Art Unlimited exhibition in Basel, Switzerland, this June.