Columbus Makes Art Presents: Artist Richard Duarte Brown Talks Inspirations in Making & Teaching Art
Richard Duarte Brown has been making art since the age of six, but he is also well known in the Columbus community for teaching art through countless programs. For the second year in a row, Duarte will open his studio to the public during Columbus Open Studio & Stage, Oct. 7-8. Lacey Luce interviewed Duarte to get to know the artist a little bit better before hanging out in his studio this fall.
Lacey: You’ve been making art for decades, how has your work evolved over the years?
Duarte: I have learned to trust the voice coming through me and to be confident with my contributing response or perspective in life.
Lacey: I’ve seen you teach in the Art in the House program, and your ability to connect with the young people in the room was inspiring. Will you share a favorite memory from your experience as a teacher?
Duarte: Most of the fondest memories are when it finally clicks in a person, “Yea, I am an artist. I can do this!” But there was a girl that used to make art with me. She went away for a while and came back with a child. She gave me a note explaining she had been raped. She saw a print of hers that I sold. It was hanging in an office framed, and she decided to get back into art. She submitted a portfolio and won a $10,000 scholarship.
Lacey: You inspire a community of young artists, who inspires you?
Duarte: I am inspired by other creatives from all over the world and especially the local creatives here in Columbus.
Lacey: How would you describe your studio?
Duarte: The one people are visiting is an organized shared space waiting for visitors to walk into a corner of my mind.
Lacey: What do you do to recharge creatively?
Duarte: Go to bed early and dream… get quiet, turn off all news and noise, play in dirt and plant something and watch it grow.
Lacey: You participated in COSS last year, how’d it go? Any memories about that weekend that stand out?
Duarte: I got close to the other artists in COSS; there was a feeling of camaraderie. But, more importantly, the dreamer in other people seemed to arise when they walked behind the scenes and met the artist wizards.
Lacey: If you could have anyone (dead or alive) visit your studio during COSS this year, who would it be?
Duarte: I would like to have Dr. Martin Luther King and Malcom X in my studio. I’d tell them how many fatherless boys like me saw them as honest leaders and thank them for their vision to comfort humanity fearlessly.
Columbus Open Studio & Stage is 11 a.m. to 5 p.m., Oct. 7-8 and features 50 artists (32 sites) city wide as well as seven stages and 12 community partners. Maps are $10 (or $18 for two, $35 for four, $75 for 10) and can be purchased online at columbusopenstudioandstage.com. Maps are required to enter studios.
Columbus Makes Art Presents is a bi-weekly column brought to you by the Greater Columbus Arts Council – supporting art and advancing culture in Columbus. The column is a project of the Art Makes Columbus campaign, telling the inspiring stories of the people and organizations who create Columbus art. Each column will be written by a different local arts organization to give you an insiders look at how #artmakescbus.