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BWLI Students and Committee

MCLA Gallery 51 to Feature New Art By Richard Criddle

08/20/2012

 NORTH ADAMS, MA - Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts (MCLA) Gallery 51 will present "Compendium," a solo exhibition of new drawings and sculptures by local artist Richard Criddle, on Aug. 30.

A free reception will be held Thursday, Aug. 30, from 6 to 9 p.m. as part of the DownStreet Art Thursday celebration.

Criddle's work is inextricably linked to the idea of "work ethic." As such, the body of work included in this exhibition serves to celebrate the individual's ability to affect a difference through craft, planning, design, skill and application. His near-obsession with the discovery and magic of the sculptural process through the use of tools, machines and materials underpins his creative process. He describes the monumental as being "made possible by directed effort."

For Criddle, who is the director of fabrication and installation at Massachusetts Museum of Contemporary Art (MASS MoCA), sculpture demands a high degree of resourcefulness. He finds "joy in discovering, extracting, blending, articulating, manufacturing, building, sharing and showing his work." His work reflects his quick-witted sense of humor. The characters and narratives in his sculptures are created from a wide range of materials including scrap metal, industrial hardware, old furniture and found objects.

Criddle studied fine art sculpture at the Central School of Art and Design in London where he received a BA (honors) degree. He went on to study bronze casting under Sri Lankan master founder, Tissa Ranasinghe, at the Royal College of Art. He has completed several major public art commissions, most notably his series of seven fabricated steel sculptures, "Industrial Shrines," for the Black Country Route, a major new highway in England's West Midlands.

His sculpture has been exhibited throughout the United Kingdom, including twice at the Royal Academy of Arts in London. More recently, Criddle completed a major public sculpture for New Jersey Transit sited outside Penn Station in Newark, N.J.

The fifth annual season of DownStreet Art celebrates the arts on the last Thursday of every month in downtown North Adams. There will be gallery exhibition openings, street musicians, a mural unveiling and specials at local businesses. The event is free and open to the public. All of the participating artists will be in attendance.

The initiative was designed to revitalize downtown North Adams by identifying the City as a cultural haven. The program serves not only to increase MCLA's visibility, but to showcase what other local arts organizations have to offer. For more information about DownStreet Art and the Berkshire Cultural Resource Center, go to www.downstreetart.org and www.mcla.edu/bcrc.

For more information about Criddle's artwork, visit his Web site: http://www.richardcriddlesculpture.com. "Compendium" runs through Sept. 23. MCLA Gallery 51 is at 51 Main St. in North Adams and is open daily from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.