Richard Claremont is an Australian artist who was born in 1965 in Sydney. He attended a Steiner School, which placed a great emphasis on creativity and the development of the child. There were lessons about the Norse myths, ancient civilisations and old folk tales. It was a rich environment which developed a love of drawing with crayons and painting in watercolour.
Richard also discovered a love of mechanical things. “I would draw endless conveyor belts and pie-making machines with little attendants – there was something about factory automation which appealed to me, the idea that we were all somehow tiny cogs in a huge machine”.
By the time Richard reached high school, his interest in art and English language seemed to be pointing him in the direction of graphic design and advertising. In 1980 he worked at Artflow Graphics in Sydney where he had the opportunity to create by hand some press-ready artwork. At this time It seemed to him that the only way to make a career from art was to work at a commercial art studio.
However, in 1982 when Richard completed his HSC, he made the decision to study Visual Arts instead of Graphic Design. From 1983-1985 he completed a degree at Sydney College of the Arts, majoring in painting. His work from this time is semi-abstract, continuing the theme of mythology and man’s complex relationship to the world.
In 1988, to supplement his income, Richard became a postman. He finds the time spent delivering the mail to be a good opportunity to think and plan his next painting. Over the last 15 years, Richard has had several exhibitions of his work in both Wollongong and Sydney. His painting from this time examines the impact of mining on the Australian landscape, and much of this work is now on permanent display at Bluescope Steel Visitors Centre at Port Kembla. His interest in painting machinery has now extended to a love of painting classic cars.
Richard is happily married and lives in Shellharbour with a cat, a chicken and a disabled budgie.