Dick Evans was born in the “Land of Enchantment,” New Mexico, USA. Having grown up in a rural farming community in the panhandle of Texas, he had no exposure at all to art until he started college. Fortunately he was required to take drawing and design courses as he started his supposed major of architecture. He soon realized architecture was not right for him, but also that he loved ART! As he progressed through an advertising art program at Texas Tech, he realized he was more interested in the Fine Arts, and transferred to a rich art program at the University of Utah, where he obtained a BFA in Drawing and Painting, and went on to obtain an MFA in Ceramics and Sculpture.
After completing college, Evans began a university teaching career. His first position was back at the university where he began as a student, Texas Tech. He taught courses in ceramics, drawing, and design. At the age of twenty-nine he was granted tenure. Uneasy about settling into one area so early in life he resigned within the month and set out on his own with wife and two children, establishing studios in Northern New Mexico in which he produced sculpture and ceramics. After a year he realized how much he missed teaching and returned to the university scene. He spent a year teaching at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville. Then he spent three years teaching art at the University of New Mexico. In 1975 he married for the second time. This time to sculptor Susan Stamm Evans, with whom he is still married. Also in 1975 he took a position teaching art at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee. Evans progressed through the professorial ranks to tenure, full professorship, and also a two-year stint as Associate Dean of the School of Fine Arts.
In 1987 the Evans’ made the decision to leave academia and devote full time to their art. In 1990 they decided to return to New Mexico. They moved to Santa Fe and built a house with two studios. Throughout Evans’ teaching career he was teaching primarily in ceramics, and thus also working in that medium as his primary form of expression (although he also produced sculpture in welded steel and cast bronze). In 1991, after several years of creating ceramic murals, he decided to return to his early love of painting. Evans’ art is found in 17 Art Museums and over a dozen Corporate collections. He has had over 30 solo shows as well as numerous group shows and invitational shows. Examples of his work are found in 7 books and many periodicals and publications.
Regardless of medium, critics and reviewers are always struck by the richness of form and color used by Evans. Reference to the mysterious, emotional and psychological is always a primary concern. Never interested in a “realist” manner of expression, he continues always to attempt to get to a deeper, more personal place. His feeling is that the more personal the statement is, the more universal it may be. By avoiding the visually expected, his art often aids the viewer to see surroundings in a different and richly rewarding manner.
Photo credit by Kate Russell