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Richard Smith

Born 1931, Letchworth, Hertfordshire.

Richard Smith went first to Luton School of Art from 1948-50 before going on to National Service with the Royal Air Force.  He attended St Albans School of Art from 1952-54 and then the Royal College of Art in London from 1954-57.  He held a Harkness Fellowship for two years in the USA from 1959.  He came back to teach at St Martin's School of Art in London.  He was included in the exhibition Situation at the RBA Gallery in 1960.  He was one of Six Young Artists to represent Britain at the Venice Biennale of 1966 and went on to win the Grand Prize at the Sao Paulo Bienal of 1967.  In the early 1960s his abstract canvases were shaped, a phase which developed into three dimensional paintings or boxes.  His particular brand of Pop Art concentrated on packaging, and he was obsessed with boxes.  'You don't buy visible goods, you don't buy cigarettes; only cartons.  The box is your image of the box' quoted in Art Without Boundaries (Thames & Hudson, 1972).  The three dimensional problems of representation continue to absorb him.