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  • richardkiddestate

Newsletter #1 March 2023

Updated: Nov 2, 2023


It has now been just over a year since we (Rachael and Daisy Kidd) started archiving the work of our dad, Richard Kidd. What once felt like an impossible task is becoming a rewarding project and with every little step, we get closer to our goal of continuing and developing his legacy as an artist. We hope one day, in the not too distant future, to produce a catalogue of his work and a retrospective exhibition.


This newsletter will be an opportunity for us to share our progress with the project. We hope to send it out every 2-3 months, or whenever we have something exciting to share. You can sign up to receive future newsletters by email here.


Zooming Around (Berlin/Sheffield)


Working between Sheffield and Berlin, we began laying the groundwork for the archive, which involved many hours on Zoom, tedious spreadsheets and documenting everything, from doodles scribbled on the backs of napkins, to eight-by-ten-foot oil paintings.


A screenshot from one of the many zoom sessions between Sheffield and Berlin.

For the first time ever we have an inventory of all the current work in the estate, currently recorded as approximately 100 works on paper and 60 large canvases and assemblages (built compositions), each one measured and photographed, coded and stored, stylistically categorised and chronologically ordered. The process of creating the inventory brought many unexpected delights and enabled us to view the work from a more curatorial, objective standpoint. Through cataloguing, the narratives and progression of the three decade body of work work began to emerge, and in turn gave us insight into who he was an artist and how his different lived environments influenced him.


We set up an Instagram account and a website to open the project up to a wider audience. It has been really encouraging to hear from so many people who knew him or his work - students, contemporaries, friends - who have helped us to build a richer picture of his life and work. The often hilarious anecdotes, dusty slide photographs, and dog eared exhibition catalogues have been both heart-warming and valuable for our understanding of how everything fits together.


A photograph sent to us by Amanda Goodrum, a friend of Richards, showing a painting before it was shipped to Australia in the early 2000s.

Masterpieces of the Avant-garde


After stumbling across and acquiring a copy of “Anney Juda Fine Art/Juda Rowan gallery: Masterpieces of the Avantegarde” we found a fantastic record of Richard’s shows at the Rowan Gallery in London during the 1970s, along with an extensive record of the other artists represented between 1960 and 1985. We were quite taken aback by the caliber of featured artists and the quality of the essays which help to contextualise the art that was created in association with the galleries. The book has helped us greatly in understanding Richard’s work art-historically and stylistically, and opened up the potential for us to reconnect with the people and institutions who played a role in his early career.


One of the most fruitful relationships we have made is with Robert Moon, the son of one of Richard’s UK contemporaries, Jeremy Moon, during the 70s and 80s. Jeremy Moon was one of the most ambitious and celebrated abstract painters of the 1960s, an artist also showing at the Rowan Gallery, and a close friend of Richard’s. Moon tragically died in November 1973 at the age of 39 following a motorbike accident.


The Instagram account we set up for Richard came to Roberts attention and he got in touch with us and agreed to meet us so we could ask some questions. Robert has been working for many years on Jermery Moon’s own archive, documenting his work, storing it, lending it, and showing it both in galleries and online - but most recently he has played a big part in the creation of a beautifully curated book with his gallery, Luhring Augustine, detailing the life and works of his father. Robert very kindly gifted us a copy to help us along in getting Richard’s own archive project up and off the ground. We feel inspired and encouraged!




Thank you for reading. We look forward to sharing more of our archive findings and plans for Richard Kidd's work in future newsletter.


Rachael & Daisy Kidd




How you can get involved


We are so grateful for all of the offers we receive from people who want to help with the project. Every bit of archive material we get sent, and every new connection encourages us to keep going. Here are some of the ways that you can help if you have time:

  • Help us spread the word: our main goal with this project is to continue Richard's legacy as an artist and to encourage other artists' estates in the same position as us. There are many ways that people can discover his work - via the Instagram account, the website, or by coming to see our collection in person. If you know people who like art and cultural archives then please consider linking them to the project or directly to us.

  • Send us archival material: the archive is not in one place; it is an ever expanding collection that exists in many people's homes and minds! If you have memories, photographs, videos, anecdotes, letters, paintings - or anything that can help us to build a better understanding of Richard as an artist - then we would love to receive it and talk about it. The email address is at the bottom of this newsletter.

  • Become an archive ally: Do you have experience working with archives or art collections, or are you also involved in an artist estate or legacy project? We would love to find people who can share some wisdom, knowledge and tips about this field.


 

Sign up to receive future newsletters by email here.


Follow the @Richardkidd_artist Instagram account here for weekly updates (if you don't have Instagram, you can still have a look by clicking the link).


Get in touch by emailing richardkiddestate@protonmail.com




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