WILLIAMSTOWN -- The David and Joyce Milne Public Library will host a special exhibition of oils for the entire month of February by Williamstown resident John "Skeets" Richards.
He was born in Adams, on Feb. 3, 1947 and attended public schools there, graduating from the former Adams Memorial High School in 1965. He received a B.A. in Physics and an M.A. in Education from North Adams State College, now named the Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts.
Richards has been married to Barbara Richards since 1969 and have one daughter, Carolyn. He and his wife have resided in Williamstown since 1972. He was a Science Teacher at the Berkshire Country Day School in Lenox, for one year and a Physics Teacher at Drury High School in North Adams for 34 years, and officially retired from teaching on June 30, 2004.
His desire to paint in oils began as a child but took hold in the mid 1980's due to a television "how-to" painter named Bill Alexander. He was a teacher of Bob Ross, another PBS featured landscape painter. Shortly afterwards he became very interested in the landscape paintings of the Hudson River School Painters of the mid 1800s, including such artists as Frederic Church, George Inness, and Albert Bierstadt. Their ability to portray nature as they saw it, a wondrous place with intricate details that man is subordinate to, was
Besides the art world, his hobbies have included fishing, hunting, playing organized sports, billiards, Enduro motorcycle riding, photography, raising tropical fish, archery, fly tying, swimming, model trains, throwing darts, bowling, golfing, playing the banjo, guitar, and bass (bluegrass style), playing chess, playing poker, gardening, and his most recent passion, bonsai.
He has studied with Andrew Orr, a wonderful artist and teacher from northern Vermont, with Leah Lopez, one of the finest Still Life painters in the country, and with Christopher Pierce, master floral still life artist.
The artist also has a website which shows over 90 of his paintings, some for sale and many owned by people from around the United States. Visit jrichardsjr.com.
The artwork can be seen along the library's main hall during Library hours are Monday through Friday 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., Wednesdays 10 a.m. to 8 p.m., and Saturday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
For more info: 413-458-5369, firstname.lastname@example.org.