Richard E. Beasley


Art of the Letter

On Display

March 26, 2010 – August 9, 2010


Auditorium Gallery, level 1

Richard E. Beasley 1934-1992

Dick Beasley was a preeminent figure in the calligraphic world; he was one of the first to merge traditional letterforms with the aesthetic philosophy of fine art. Self taught as a calligrapher, Richard studied graphic design at Rhode Island School of Design and later received his Master of Fine Arts in drawing and painting from Claremont Graduate University. After many years of working as an advertising designer Dick Beasley entered the teaching profession. He taught drawing, printmaking and painting at Northern Arizona University from 1968 till his untimely death in 1992. Through his abandonment of verbal content and commitment to the idea that the gestalt of a piece is more important than the individual parts, Richard’s legacy as an artist and teacher will endure.

“We all must be both artists and craftsmen. It is possible for one to be an artist but not a craftsman – great ideas poorly made. It is equally possible for one to be a craftsman but not an artist – beautifully made poor ideas. Whether we choose to use the word craftsman or the word artist, both demand equal pedestals because each is only one-half of a total human endeavor.”

“Every calligrapher, whether untrained or trained as an artist, should be allowed the pleasure and freedom to design beautifully, with simplicity or complexity, and with clear visual images requiring or not requiring words, without feeling inadequate for not following just one direction or tradition in the letter forms.”