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    Georgia Schoeman

    Magician, manipulator or creative genius?

    How has Richard Scott captivated such a varied and widespread audience? What is his secret of popularity? With his controversy and self-proclaimed arrogance, one would perhaps wish a less successful reception.

    His overconfidence could turn the most placid of people away, and you would have thought his inexorable use of marketing and the media would be his downfall. On the contrary, you just can't help but love his works, whether or not you like the persona. Which in itself begs the question: is this showmanship a true reflection of the man, or just another PR stunt to gain our attention? But whatever tricks and stunts Richard uses to create awareness, once it's focused it's very easy to forget the initial reaction to the man behind the paint brush.

    So what is it about the works that gets us going? Could it be their eternal optimism? An ideal we would all like to achieve, or at the very least be a part of. The cats are the epitome of the cool cat, the bougainvillea are what we would all like to have in the garden, neat and tidy, and the cars all what we would like to have in the driveway. The ladies in their panties, so self-assured, so wanting to be admired, with no thought of the possibility of criticism, represent a freedom we would all love to experience. The colours used heighten the energy we already experience from the very boldness of the simplicity of form. There is that cheeky quality that draws us to the works. A smile is never far from our mouths. In a word, the works are entertaining.

    Richard sets a standard not only of the physical quality of execution of the artwork you are buying, but also of its originality. It is always first-rate. There is a constant which is created and clients are never disappointed. His depictions of his subjects are so original and witty, yet not very far from the everyday, or from what we have seen depicted in art for the past five hundred years. You couldn't get a message across any more simply, and therefore the works are totally accessible to all. But don't mistake the naivety of the form to lessen the impact of the idea. As one client pointed out, he uses one of the oldest genres - the female nude - in such a bold and inspiring way. How on earth does he do it?

    Magician, manipulator or creative genius, whatever the man, the works speak for themselves. They are loved and appreciated, they are straightforward, colourful and fun, perhaps the best interpretation of life we could wish for.

    Georgia Schoeman
    Owner of Peacock Gallery, Franschhoek and founder of art@home South Afrcia art agent and consultancy in London and Cape Town.

    Taken from Richards Book 2005

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