Artist's Biography - James Rizzi
( October 5th, 1950 - December 26, 2011 )
Born in Brooklyn, New York in 1950, Rizzi studied art at the University of Florida (Gainesville), where he began experimenting with painting, printmaking and sculpting. His goal was to combine all three techniques in his work, an aim finally realized in his now well-known 3-D constructions. Duplicate images, carefully cut out and attached, each one above its counterpart, create richly-textured editions through a truly striking use of traditional printmaking techniques. In his painting, as well, Rizzi has begun to make three-dimensional images and has even experimented with movable, magnetic pieces.
Describing the style of his art as Curban primitive, James Rizzi is a Surrealist in the tradition of Miro and Klee. His childlike work is the spontaneous expression of inner emotion, transcribed onto paper in an immediate, robust style. Rizzi's printmaking technique is as unusual as his subjects. Rizzi's serigraphs are three-dimensional works in which the image is printed twice, once in black and white on a flat sheet of paper, and again in full color, cut out with meticulous care, and attached above the first flat image. The added dimensionality gives Rizzi's prints a sense of movement and playfulness.
Since his 1974 debut in The Brooklyn Museum's ongoing series of print exhibitions, Rizzi has participated in numerous one-man and group shows worldwide. He has, in addition, designed record album covers, stage sets and animated videos for the rock group, The Tom Tom Club, and is the subject of both a TV film released in 1987 in Japan and a major book published in the United States in 1988. A true innovator, James Rizzi articulates, through his art, the influences and emotions experienced by us all.
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