Charles Ritchie (b. 1954) creates impossibly small-scaled drawings exploring the landscape and environment of his suburban home in Silver Spring, MD. Derived from commonplace objects and prosaic scenes, the microcosms found within his works are a culmination of observations made from select vantage points across thirty-five years.
Ritchie’s fluency in employing light pervades his drawings and becomes a basis for their introspective and ethereal nature. During his early morning studio practice, the artist finds inspiration in the subtle, transitory states of his subjects—a sliver of light, a shift in season, a muted shadow. Often taking years to complete, each drawing is “an abstracted accumulation of many different experiences and events.”
Manipulation of medium and scale augment the artist's sustained engagement and study. The perceptive nature of Ritchie’s work reflects his attempt to reveal visible and metaphorical landscapes through the documentation of his personal environment. Intimate in subject and physical presence, his art offers the viewer an experience that can extend beyond the visual—unveiling the emotional intensity rooted in the artist’s relationship with his work.
Born in Pineville, Kentucky, Charles Ritchie received his BFA in graphic design at the University of Georgia in 1977 and his MFA in painting at Carnegie Mellon University in 1980. His works are included in the collection of the Baltimore Museum of Art, Baltimore, MD; the Fogg Art Museum, Harvard University Art Museums, Cambridge, MA, the Fine Arts Museums of San Francisco, San Francisco, CA; the Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, NY; the National Gallery of Art, Washington D.C.; the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Philadelphia, PA; the Philadelphia Museum of Art, Philadelphia, PA; Yale University Art Gallery, New Haven, CT; and more.
Ritchie currently lives and works in Silver Spring, MD.