Bio and C.V. 2018
Richard John Forbes
Richard John Forbes lives and works in Johannesburg, South Africa as a visual artist.
His process drives his practice. A strong emphasis is placed on physical engagement in his work.
This attention can be seen and experienced clearly in the textures, layers and exploration of form translated from his hands into his work.
“I am interested in the veil suspended between all things, the charged film of atmosphere
my is compulsion to gain experience with many different media and this tool box of multiple disciplines allows me to explore every idea I have relating to a potential filamentary thin membrane separating everything.”
My practice includes, sculpture, installation, public work, Land art, Printmaking, Painting, film, document and drawing.
Further more, through collective and group practice I seek out ways of reaching through that membrane to expand experiences and awareness
I have had multiple solo exhibitions in the South Africa, United Kingdom, and participated in more than 25 group shows.
My work stands in private collections and on public sites in the South Africa, United Kingdom, United States, Australia, The Netherlands, France, and United Arab Emirates.
I have curated two critical exhibitions, one 30 person group show and 1 a dedicated solo.
I have stages designed a sold out play, The Suit by Can Themba, directed by James Ncgobo at the market theatre.
Guest Lecturer at Pretoria University, SA and a guest speaker at the university of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, USA.
February– A shy restrained pink thing- Exposed, revived and blessed in Die OOG, Groot Marico, North Western Provence, South Africa.
January- A shy restrained pink thing-Exposed at Harrie Siertsma’s MAP Gallery, Grass Kop, Mpumalanga, South Africa in collaboration with BLOCH of Bloch Global, Comcom curated by Roger Gentinetta.
Exposed under Mary Shires falls, Grass kop, Mpumalanga, South Africa.
Exposed in London Forestry Arbor, Grass kop, Mpumalanga, South Africa in collaboration with BLOCH Global, Comcom curated by Roger Gentinetta.
December- A shy restrained pink thing – Exposed on the roof of Luis Alonzo Barkigia’s Studio, New Jersey ,the snow in New York skyli ne in the distance, USA
Exposed in an indigenous Swamp land being cleared for development. Savanna Georgia, USA
Exposed to a Peterbuilt cement truck, Cement factory, Wynwood Walls, MIAMI BASEL, Miami , FL,USA
Exposed to Miami south beach pier and sunset, MIAMI BASEL, Miami beach FL, USA
Exposed in room 263, The original Play Boy Bunny Club, Plaza hotel, South Beach, FL , USA MIAMI BASEL
November- A shy restrained pink thing- Exposed to Coffs Harbor Air port- Parachute drop zone New South Wales, Australia
Exposed to Coffs Harbor Jetty, New South Wales, Australia
October- A shy restrained pink thing- Exposed to Knysna, Oak Arbor, Western Cape, South Africa
October-A shy restrained pink thing- Exposed in Tsitikama nature reserve, Western Cape, South Africa
October- A shy restrained pink thing-unexposed at home, Johannesburg, Gauteng, South Africa
October- A shy restrained pink thing- exposed on Tieties Baai island, Paternoster, Western Cape, South Africa
October-A shy restrained pin thing- exposed at Modern Art Projects – Richmond, Northern Cape South Africa
October- Participated in “WORDS” Exhibition and literary festival at Nirox sculpture Park and foundation. De-codex and Dark Codex.
September- A shy restrained pink thing- exposed at Nirox Foundation, Marapeng, Gauteng, South Africa,In collaboration with Hector Hernandes Rosas for Willem Bosoff’s birthday party.
September- A shy restrained pink thing –first exposure at the Cosmopolitain during JHB Art fair and JHB art week, Maboneng, Johannesburg, South Africa.
June-July- Matadero Madrid- El Ranchito Nigeria-Sud Africa residency. A body of sacred Spanish Alabaster works created in 6 weeks.
On residency with Sophia Van wyk, Hector Hernandes Rosas, Mar Guerrero, Taiye Idahor , Christian Newby, Gloria Oyarzabal, Obina Makatta culminating in a group exhibition “YO COMO CALIDAD” I BUY QUALITY.
June– Installed SONAR SOUND – Hermanus Old Harbour for the Hermanus cliff walks anual sculpture exhibition .
A sound resonant steel disc 4m in diameter raised 1.5m off the ground to oscillate to the puling of the wind and the sea.
May –June –
“The Suit” by Can Themba
opended at the Market theatre Johannesburg, South Africa
Stage and sets designed by Richard Forbes , directed by James Ncgobo
‘Spire’ – A White south African marble petro glyph-
installed at the old Enrico Daffonchio house ,designed by Architect Douglas Cowin in the Bauhaus style 1930s .
Houghton, Johannesburg, Gauteng South Africa ,
Jade Hamburger collection.
May 1st – Winter sculpture Fair at Nirox sculpture Park
CO-curated by Yorkshire Sculpture Park ,UK
Dark Codex – a volume In pursuit of Darkness.
This spacious sculpture event will run until the end of July and is free to the public on weekends except when there is a fixed event.
November 19th- Artist proof studio at Absa Gallery
Absa towers East, Johannesburg
4 Drypoint etchings . “Lucid Sedation” 1-4
October 1st– Transitions at the post office.
The old Transvaal post office 1906-
20 Solomon st, Vrededorp, Johannesburg, Gauteng, South Africa
Curators– Richard J Forbes and Danny Myburg .
#30 Artists- one big night!
Ellipse– a 9 foot suspended wooden void and 4 evolved dry point prints.
September– Johannesburg art fair– represented by Artist proof studio.
August- Turbine art fair-Artist proof studio -new evolved Dry point prints.
May- Nirox winter sculpture fair
Marapeng, Kromdraai, Cradle of human kind, Gauteng, South Africa
Vessel– A 9 foot cast iron permanent record of a dance.
May- Vessel is unveiled @The winter Sculpture Fair, Nirox sculpture garden , Marapeng ,The cradle of human kind <South Africa
May _ “Twister” exhibited @ Hazzard Gallery , Maboneng , Johannesburg ,South Africa
December- Vortex 5 at BRUNDYN+ Gallery’s summer show “Anyway” the wind blows” Cape Town
November –December- Artist Residency at Nirox Foundation. Exploring new works in ston, and performance.
October- “Paper” a Group exhibition at Artist Proof studios exploring alternative, sculptural uses of paper.
August- Nirox project space #3
with Stephan Erasmus, and Ansi Nitingeka
June- Turbine art fair with Prince Albert gallery
May- Nirox winter sculpture exhibition
Joburg Joburg Exhibition.
March 1st & 8th on the roof of corner house , Commisioner street, Johannesburg.
September : Vortex 1 installed at Spier wine estate, Stellenbosch, Western Cape, RSA
Milwaukee print shows at Johannesburg art fair with Artist proof studios alongside 4 New prints from the star walker series relating to water bearer .
August: Res gallery Jan Smuts ave, Johannesburg.
Processed a solo exhibition exploring the digital process of the brain through print and sculpture
Forth coming Events:
13th. University of Milwaukee– Guest speaker and print collaborative workshops until the 23rd.
Vortex 1 & 2 ( large steel structures ) unveiled at the Nirox sculpture park , Maboneng, Gauteng, South Africa for the “After the Rainbow nation” exhibition
Opening date to be announced for end of March
“ Tempest” commenced
September– Represented by Artist Proof studio & David brown Fine Art at Johannesburg art fair.
Invitation by Elena Rocci to contribute to her and Rhett Martyn’s architectural art installation at Gifa ( Gauteng institute of Architecture) during the Art fringe festival . Braamfontein , JHB, Gauteng South Africa
Participated in the Prince Albert art fair . Print & sculpture
May– Participated in 21 years of Artist proof studios at Johannesburg Art Gallery
“Water Bearer” lino print 1m by 1800 m
15 March- 15 April A.R.C @ Gibs ( Gordon institute of business science),Ilovo , Johannesburg, South Africa
December: Marvelouse world 5–Prince Albert Klein Karoo
Sarel Petrus, Guy Dutoit Richard John Forbes, Paul Cooper
September:_ Monumental Wood carving mentorship for Pretoria university. 3rd year students produced work to stand on the grounds of the university around a newly created lecture hall. Trees were sourced from the excavations to offset the carbon footprint of the site. Installation of works January 2012
September:- Artist proof studios shown at Johannesburg Art fair
May-August:– A.R.C. @ JAG – Mid career retrospective solo show at Johannesburg art gallery
February– Marvelous World- 4 male sculptors, Richard Forbes, Guy Dutoit,
Sarel Petrus, Paul Cooper.
Venue- Fried gallery Pretoria
March– female dirigible “ aviatrix” exhibited on a Christian Nerf disposable experience, Cape town , wood stock.
April– Exhibited published print collection on the Johannesburg art fair courtesy of Artist proof studio.
Africa burns- Purged “The kiss” with fire .
July– prints and minuments of ‘Courage’ and ‘elevator’ @ Grand Provence , Franschoek , western Cape.
September– Exhibited “ Courage” along with 20 respected sculptors in the ”Roof top” exhibition, St. Lorient wedding and dress design venue, Pretoria. This show moves to University of Johannesburg gallery for an opening on the 7th of October to be open for 2 months.
October– “ Quiet revolution’ print exhibited and sold for the fund raiser of Artist Proof Studios at gala dinner Mastre Antonio.
Participated in “Taped”, a Public art experiment by Rhett Martyn at Inscape design school, Rosebank , Johannesburg.
November– Printed an addition of “ A.R.C @ JAG” for the Johannesburg Art Gallery centenary book to be launched on the 28th on November 2010.Part of the series of prints to be show in May of 2011 “A.R.C” a mid career retrospective.
December– “Sarah’s world” and “Courage” show on “Angels” Gallery at Grande Provence, Franschoek, Western Cape, South Africa.
December-Research for Exhibit a mid career retrospective show at JAG in May of 2011.
September– Exhibited along with 20 sculptors in the ”Roof top” exhibition, St. Lorient wedding and dress design venue, Pretoria. This show moves to University of Johannesburg gallery for an opening on the 7th of October to be open for 2 months.
May -at The art room, Melville JHB“ Composing cats series” lino cut prints.
April- Exhibited a ‘quiet revolution’ print and a printed dirigible on the Johannesburg art fair courtesy of Artist proof studio.
January- Commenced creation, completion and installation of 2 public works for Berea, Johannesburg commissioned by the JDA through the trinity Sessions . ‘Courage’ and ‘Elevator’
November- Assisted Guy Dutoit with a 3m / 3m/3m concrete wave for Jefreys bay, Eastern Cape.
Marvelous World- 4 male sculptors, Richard Forbes, Guy Dutoit,
Sarel Petrus, Paul Cooper.
3 venues over one year.
Outlet\ at Pretoria tech. Bag factory\ Johannesburg. Off the wall \
Paarl in the Cape.
February-“Courage” – Mixed media 3m high sculpture in
Private Commission – door for Michelangelo
The King suite. 18 month completed and installed.
November – Participated in a wood block\lino cut printing
work shop hosted by JHB art bank and Artist
Proof studio. Produced the “ Composing cats series”
September 22nd-October13th – Quiet Revolution
concluded in SA in a solo show at The Premises
gallery, Johannesburg Civic theatre August- assisted William Kentridge with a wooden
horses for his forth coming opera ‘The Nose‛.
Horses shown at the Goodman gallery.
July – Quiet Revolution hosted at the Topsy
Foundation (haven for Aids afflicted families and
June – Commenced work on ‚SAND ANGEL AND
SHAMAN‛ the entrance of the pent house suite of
the Michelangelo towers, Sandton, Johannesburg,
April – carved two monumental sculptures for
Johannesburg Art bank to be placed at
Johannesburg Water, named The Fluid Couple(two
3m high wood carvings depicting water towers, as I
March – Blue Gum project sponsored by Absa, in
Prince Albert, Klein Karoo. Five monumental trees
carved and four carvers trained. Finished sculpture
called The Burghers of Prince Albert
December – Submitted a print and a spinning top (Quiet
Revolution) to the National School of Arts for its traveling
exhibition of the East, beginning in Singapore
June – Workshop at St Stithian’s College Cultural Day with 1000
June – Workshop/show The Quiet Revolution at Artist proof Studio
with approximately 100 students.
May – Completed one Miniature Theatre for William Kentridge’s ‚
Magic Flute ‚ projections. Project destination: Paris.
May – Provided Absa Bank with commissioned trophies for Absa
Atelier Award 2006
February – Ripple Exhibition at Absa Gallery, Johannesburg (8-
January— Established Richard J Forbes school for sculpture.
February— Beginning of” Blue gum project”
March— Research film trip to Zimbabwe and Botswana Produced ‘4
rivers’ digital film .Part of the MTN art collection. Commenced
production of” With Logs” exhibition .
April— Completed scale model display theatre for William Kentridge’s
“Magic Flute” as seen at La Monne’ opera house , Brussels, Belgium.
May— Commenced film production of ”The Somnambulist” with
technical assistance from Craig. A transparent night watch self portrait.
Submitted “The Somnambulist “ to Brett Kebble ward.
July— “With Logs” solo exhibition opened at 157 Jan Smuts Ave,
September—- Commissioned to create 5 more miniature theatres for
William Kentridge destined for Italy, New York, Zurich, Paris.
October— Exhibited on group show at Michael Angelo Tower Mall ,
Sandton , Johannesburg by invitation from the Trinity Session.
November— Completed 3 Miniature Theatres for William Kentridge’s
“ Magic Flute “ projections.
December – Commenced production for new exhibition; “ RIPPLE “ at
ABSA Gallery, down town Johannesburg.
February-completed 4th and last monument model for
March –Exhibited through ORT South Africa at the chief
Rabbi Cyril Harris Sinagogue.
April –Resident at the Gordart Gallery ,3rd
Ave,Melville,Jhb,SA. With thanks to Gordon Froud the
curator, I have participated in two group shows.
April –“Nodd” the oak nodding Daschund showing in
the ‘ten years of democracy’ exhibition at the Everard
Read Gallery,no.6 Jellicoe Ave,Rosebank,JHB,SA ,for the
month of April .
May—Stained glass and found wood gable front door
installed at Livni family home, Emmarentia
June: Participated on Gordart vinyl disc exhibition
which travelled to ART KLOPP.
September—Finalist on the Brett Kebble art award
October—Exhibited TAC TOC with Toni Ann Ballenden
at Gordart. Melvillle ,Jhb
November/ December— Created a stereo scope viewer
for William Kentridge.
1989– graduated from Johannesburg school for art,
ballet, music & drama with a 1st in painting, and
sculpture. Second in drawing and photography.
2003– -March- Carfax, ‘vinyl cube’ event. -July-
Carfax, ‘vinyl cube’ event.
August– Commenced assistance to William
Kentridge on 4 monumental sculptures for the
museum of modern art , Western Australia. To
be completed by January 2004.
November 22 Carfax ‘vinyl cube 3 The Kiss
2002– Carfax group exhibition. Commenced
work on a solo body of work while allowing
private viewing at No.66, 6th street, Linden,
July: Blind Spot 2” Dry Barry Gallery, Vrededorp,
October: Group exhibition, Stewart Gallery,
Parkhurst, Johannesburg, SA.
Commenced front door project for Mr & Mrs
2000– Returned to South Africa . –
July– Finger print participant in ‘Blind spot’, Dry
Barry Gallery, Vrede dorp, Johannesburg, SA. –
November-group exhibition, Stewart Gallery,
Parkhurst, Johannesburg, SA.
July: solo exhibition, Kings road, South
August: Group exhibition, Dorian Gallery,
Berkshire, North London.
Became totally absorbed in heritage restoration
specializing in the features of land mark
structures eg: -Wellington arch, Hide park
corner, London. -The royal institute of architects
building , Westminster, London. -The house of
parliament members tunnel, Westminster,
London. -St.Lukes church, Liverpool street,
London. -Mill Hill private school, north London. –
Dreadnought mariner’s hospital, the Queens
house, Greenwich, Southeast London. Tate
gallery, Victoria embankment, London. –
Nunhead cemetery, The chapel and notable
mausoleums, Southeast London.
June 1998-Solo exhibition of London wood carvings.
Beacon Gallery se13, London, UK.
1997– Co-founder of Beacon studios, se13 ,London, UK
A live \ work environment which eventually aided in the
amending of council bylaws across England . I.E:
commercial and residential combined licensing.
1997-commenced apprenticeship with Paul Carter.
architectural stone restorer through David Ball
Restoration to English heritage. First project: The Sultan
of Brunei’s London residence no.27 Kensington palace
gardens ,Kensington, London, UK
1996-Depford art festival. Solo exhibition for HSBC
bank, Depford, London, UK. July 1996- carved and
erected head stone for Julian Husband. Died
1994-Travelled to Canada.
Montreal,Toronto,Vancouver, Calgary then returned to
Cascais, Portugal. Commenced rigorous self training in
the skill of woodcarving and the Portuguese language.
End of 1994– emigrated to London, UK.
1995-Colaborated with tree surgeon, Julian Husband
utilizing fallen and found wood in city parks. The
London collection .
1993– Returned to Cape Town and opened the Loop
street studios. Main focus on sculpture from
1992-moved to Cape Town then on to Paris, France.
1991-Accepted a position as apprentice \ assistant to
Guy Du Toit; sculptor, bronze founder.
1990– commenced foundation course at Technicon