Richard Jolley was born in Wichita, Kansas in 1952 and then moved in his youth to Oak Ridge, Tennessee. In 1970, the artist began his studies at Tusculum College in Greenville, Tennessee, studying glass under Michael Taylor.
Building and maintaining a glass studio in Knoxville since 1975, Richard Jolley has participated in over 65 solo museum and gallery exhibitions throughout the country as well as Europe and Japan
Richard’s deep ties to his birthplace, Tennessee, are clearly visible in his work, which is innovative from a technical point of view, but classic in its form and traditional in its narrative.
Despite his American origins and his being both an artist and a craftsman, Jolley never made his own the style of the Studio Glass Movement. He has always maintained a certain distance and a clear independence – qualities that instead have placed him much closer to European artists.
In his various series – Busts (1990-1994), Torsos (1994-96), Totems (1994-2001) and Tabula Rasa (2001-2002) – the solemnity and simplicity of the human figure united to the severity and hardness of the lines that suggest movement recall the ancient Greek kouroi, besides pointing to more recent European artists such as Pablo Picasso, Henri Matisse, Alberto Giacometti and Constantin Brancusi, who undoubtedly inspired Jolley.
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