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Press Release

Richard McLean

Recent Work

March 31 – April 30, 2005


John Berggruen Gallery is pleased to present an exhibition of new paintings by Richard McLean. This exhibition opens Thursday, March 31st, and will run through Saturday, April 30th.


McLean is a photorealist painter whose focus lies in the exquisite detail of our natural world. While, for several decades, Richard McLean's signature subject matter was horses, he has now turned his attention toward the Mid-Western and California landscape. The artist has been dubbed "the master of weeds and grasses" by Ralph Goings, one of McLean's artist friends who, along with Robert Bechtle, Don Eddy and several others, comprised a small circle of Bay Area photorealist painters in the late 1960's and early 1970's. In this latest body of work, McLean is interested in the quotidian landscape; scenes of farmhouses, watertowers, and fields that one would generally pass by without a second glance. His compositions are often symmetrical and equally divided between land and sky. There is an iconic quality to his subject matter that, along with his immaculate brushwork, demands reverence. 


Richard McLean was born in Hoquiam, Washington and raised in rural Idaho. He received his BFA from California College of Art and his MFA from Mills College. His paintings can be found in the permanent collections of many major institutions, including the Whitney Museum of American Art, the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, the Smithsonian Institution, and the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art to list a few. McLean lives and works in the Bay Area.