Richard John Forbes lives and works in George, South Africa as a visual artist. His process drives his practice. A strong emphasis is placed on physical engagement in his work. Craft, Place and time.

Forbes’ practice includes sculpture, installation, public work, land art, printmaking, painting, film, performance, document and drawing.”

Forbes has had multiple solo exhibitions in South Africa, the United Kingdom, and participated in more than 40 group shows. His work stands in private collections and on public sites in the South Africa, United Kingdom, United States, Australia, The Netherlands, France, Switzerland and United Arab Emirates. He Has curated two critical exhibitions; Transitions through the post office, a 30-person group show and a solo exhibition of Black works at the Market theatre gallery, by Rhett Martyn an acclaimed Johannesburg-based visual artist and lecturer.

He stage designed 2 sold-out plays, The Suit by Can Themba, directed by James Ncgobo at The Market Theatre, and Florence by Myer Taub; and has been a Guest Lecturer at Pretoria University, SA and a guest speaker at the university of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, USA.

The creating of site related works in the landscape, as is experienced at Nirox in the form of ‘Dark Codex’ and ‘Synesthesia of water’, to name a few has focused his attention to the details found in the landscape and how that informs his artistic practice.

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 a compulsion to gain experience with many different media and this toolbox of multiple disciplines allows me to explore every idea I have relating to a potential filamentary thin membrane separating everything».

I find through collective and group practice I seek out ways of reaching through that membrane to expand experiences and awareness.


Residencies / Workshops:

  • 2020: Resident at MAP Modern Art Projects 7090, Richmond, Northern Cape, South Africa
  • 2018/19: Nirox Foundation residency
  • 2018: Alps Art Academy – Graubünden, Tenna, Switzerland
  • 2017: Matadero Madrid – El Ranchito Madrid, Spain
  • 2016: Nirox Foundation residency
  • 2013: Peck School of Art – Quiet revolution Interactive drypoint printmaking

CV - Curriculum vitae

Curriculum vitae