Paperika Redux Panel 1 (close-up), Tyvek paper, 9'h x 15'w




All visual and written content, unless otherwise attributed, is copyright Richard Shipps


Richard Shipps, Chicago, IL (248) 867 1958,






























































































“I am always doing what I can’t do yet in order to learn how to do it;”

- Vincent van Gogh


"A bird doesn't sing because it has an answer, it sings because it has a song."

- Maya Angelou


"The thing I hate the most about advertising is that it attracts all the bright, creative and ambitious young people, leaving us mainly with the slow and self obsessed to become our artists. Modern Art is a disaster area. Never in the field of human history is so much been used by so many to say so little."

- Banksy


"For the cubists, a painting was a surface covered with forms in a certain order. For me, a painting is a surface covered with representations of things in which logic and illustration have no importance."

- Mark  Chagall


“It doesn’t make much difference how the paint is put on as long as something has been said. Technique is just a means of arriving at a statement.”

- Jackson Pollack


"If something is abstract, it's indescribable with language. And the idea of painting itself is a ridiculous way of thinking about abstraction because if you're materializing something or putting it into language, you're already doing something that isn't abstract. "

- Mika Tajima


"In the same way we are expected to be indiviual and creative, we can also choose not to be so, and, strangely, no one would care. It's important to identify where the pressure to be an individual or to be creative is coming from. Is it really coming from some external imperative, or is it coming from us trying to follow the standards of the social group we associate ourselves with? Our context projects only to the standards that we define or accept as context."

- Goshka Makuga


"Things are free and fluid otherwise they're overloaded and overworked like a painting should be nothing and free and not a thing at all otherwise it becomes something of a thing to use, a thing for someone else to use, something that becomes something else and then not the same thing and so something different and different things are different things and too many things are too many things."

- Ad Reinhardt (in a postcard to Olga Scheirr)


"In art the mass of people no longer seeks consolation and exaltation, but those who are refined, rich, unoccupied, who are distillers of quintessences, seek what is new, strange, original, extravagant, scandalous.  I myself, since Cubism and before, have satisfied these masters and critics with all the changing oddities which passed through my head….By amusing myself with all these games, with all these absurdities, puzzles, rebuses, arabesques, I became famous….But when I am alone with myself, I have not the courage to think of myself as an artist in the great and ancient sense of the term.  Giotto, Titian, Rembrandt were great painters.  I am only a public entertainer…."
- Pablo Picasso, Interview, Libro Nero, 1952

"There is nothing more difficult for a truly creative painter than to paint a rose, because before he can do so he has first to forget all the roses that were ever painted."

Henri Matisse


Clowns to the left of me, jokers to the right. Here I am stuck in the middle with you.
- Stealers Wheel
“Circumstances can make almost any rule open to interpretation.”
- “Mundi Morning Quarterbacking” - The Gray Market blog 2/2/2020
Injustice anywhere is a threat to Justice everywhere
- Martin Luther King
“John, what I like about your work is what you leave out.”
- friend of John Baldessari

Everything is purged from this painting but the art. No ideas have entered this work.
- John Baldessari
The secret to success is to never listen to what anyone else thinks… but to also listen very closely.
- Harrison Ford
“Twenty years into his career, artist Roy Lichtenstein realized that he could create an original work of art only ‘by doing something completely unoriginal.’ ”
- interview with Lichtenstein 1996
“It’s like meditating, but what do I know about that? It’s a way for me to keep myself on a single focus, on a single track. There’s something pleasurable about that. So, I’m here for pleasure, in a way, although it’s not fun.
I need a dry quiet studio, because a work starts with me acknowledging those ever present, not noisy operations in the world. They’re always there, but they’re not always acknowledged. Those are the things I’m interested in.”
- Liz Magor
"Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. is often quoted as saying that 'the arc of the moral universe is long but it bends towards justice.' That is true -- but it only happens when caring, committed people put their hands on that arc and pull it toward justice. We must be those people."
- Eric Holder
“We should never feel bad for not knowing, but we should feel bad for not wanting to know. Such as, how unanswered questions are way better than unquestioned answers”
- Damien Marie AtHope
“If I’ve invited you to my studio, I’m honored by your presence,” said abstract painter. “You’d probably have to do something tremendously horrible for me to be truly offended.”
- Brett Slater
“I see very clearly that color is actually taking away the boundary of the object,” she declares. “There is no subject-object relationship anymore. I think maybe that’s what color has the potential to make us think.”
Katharina Grosse
- Bellingcat

Pre-truth or Post Truth?

Finding Truth:
It may not be true.

It may not be representative.

It may not be supportive.
Freedom is participation
- Giorgio Gaber
Prithviraj Debbarma, Explorer
Answered Oct 6, 2016 · Author has 153 answers and 47.7k answer views
You don't have thoughts because your mind is already busy creating the thought that ‘'you don't have thoughts ‘'. The mind is not an empty palace and it really doesn't take a break. Everything from sleeping, eating, playing etc. Any task or absolutely anything to do or not to do requires your mind's permission. You or anyone with a cellular structure requires some sort of a command chamber (in our case ‘'The brain') to simply exist; let alone do anything.
If humans weren't capable of having thoughts, then it should be apt to just call us stones. As we would do nothing other than just to exist physically. Forget about doing anything! If we didn't have thoughts to begin with, we might have never existed in this world and humanity or anything capable of thinking would have never existed in the first place. Due to our magnificent capability of thinking the human race has advanced to this level of existence.
So, to spoil your fun
My simple evaluation of you is that you are Bored!!!
Say less, say more
An age old problem in philosophy.
“Solipsism” refers to the terrifying possibility that you are the only being that actually exists - that everyone else is a figment of your imagination.

Most famous version:
Descartes doubt:

“Cognite ergo sum_I think therefore I am”
ie. The only thing I can be sure of is that I exist. Everything else is open to doubt.
“Artists Need to Create on the Same Scale that Society Has the Capacity to Destroy.”
- Brooklyn Rail 2017 at Mana Contemporary, Jersey City. 

“Much of the beauty that arises in art comes from the struggle an artist wages with his limited medium.”
- Henri Matisse

“I have nothing to say as an artist”
- Anish Kapoor

“Anxiety is the dizziness of freedom”
- Julian Schnabel

“Technique is just a means of arriving at a statement.”
- Jackson Pollock

“The only difference between laziness and luxury is money”
- Emily Hoerdemann

“I don’t look for a picture. I’m looking for everything that I don’t have. I always believed that the subject demands it and dictates the urgency to take a picture.”
- Guy le Baube, photographer

“You have arrived. Harmony and comfort in the middle of a storm. It’s all about chaos and natural forces anyway.”
- Joshua Nathanson VSF Gallery (Various Small Fires Gallery), LA

“To restore silence is the role of objects.”
- Samuel Beckett

“I still think science is looking for answers and art is looking for questions.”
- Marc Quinn

“I am more interested in raising questions than providing answers”
- Stanley Kubrick

“Become Your Own Navigator”
- Olafur Eliasson

“So little to say, So much time.”
- Richard Shipps

“Where do you think you’re going?”
-@393NYC street gallery sign

“This whole debate is absurd. Everyone who judges art in such a way doesn't know what art really is, which is a good thing because no body knows what it is.”
- unknown

“It would be great for both sides to stop arguing and enjoy whatever you think art is and stop saying to others their choice is wrong.”
- unknown

“Art is just favoring a few people. Modern art I've seen has been nothing but a blank space with a few colors in it and it fetches millions of dollars. I could do that. But no one would buy it. It's because the media supports a select few people and suddenly they're "great artists". Their not. Leonardo was a great artist. Raphael was a great artist. These hacks are not even in the same league as them. Please actually come up with actual art or just pick a different career so maybe you can contribute to this economy.”
- unknown

This whole debate is absurd. Everyone who judges art in such a way doesn't know what art really is, which is a good thing because nobody knows what it is.
- unknown

It would be great for both sides to stop arguing and enjoy whatever you think art is and stop saying to others their choice is wrong.

“Art is simply an expression of fantasy lifestyle”

“Shopping my demo”
- Canyon Castator

“(Art is) my way to understand the world”
- Tomory Dodge

“… Everything else is just furniture “
- George RR Martin

“Right Now. We gotta turn this thing around.”
- Eddie Van Halen

“Make it new.”
- Ezra Pound

“Seeing is a Kind of Thinking”
- Jim Nutt

“I wear a mask. And that mask, it’s not to hide who I am, but to create what I am.”
- Batman, DC comics Vol. 1 #624



Overthinking more or less
In the moment
In the momentary
In the now
In the later
in the latter
in the ladder
in the post
In the past
in the present
in the future
in the more
in the less
more or less in the moment

A drop in the ocean
Arbitrary precision
It’s already half-past tomorrow
Awake in the moment
Awake in a moment
Awaken in the moment
Awakened by the moment
Awakened by the movement

Blinkered and bonkered
A special place…
Ready to take it by storm



no way



breaking down
breaking news
blocking news
breaking nose
braking moose
breaking loose
breaking lose
breaking loss
braking loss
breaking last
braking lust
breaking bust
breaking best
braking test
shaking breast
breaking bread
breaking toast
breaking tossed
braking boost
braking booze
barking booze
barking loose
marking lose
breaking pose
barking posse
braking most
breaking must
braking post
breaking past
barking past
barking lost
blacking best
hacking messed
broken mess
braking down
breaking down

Carrying a lot of baggage
Carrying a lot of garbage
Bagging a lot of carriage
Garbing a lot of carriaging
Buying a lot of foliage
Burying a lot of garbage
Buying a lot of garage
Biting a lot of fromage
Betting a lot of coinage
Making some more carnage



All in the family
None in the family
Never, except sometimes…
The good ones that got away
The bad ones that wouldn’t leave
Loose in the wild
Kindness to a child
A hat full of stories
Seeking an answer

Haven’t we been here before?
Haven’t we seen her before?
Hasn’t she been here before?
Hasn’t she seen us before?
Hasn’t she seen us there before?
Haven’t we seen her there before?
Haven’t we been there before?

Arranging paper
A raging paper
Raining paper
Reining proper
Ranging proper
Proper paper

I can’t believe it myself
Free-range counter-forms
Oh, the stories it could tell
Forgotten details
Forgotten love
Forgotten hate
Forgotten hat
forgot about that
Distant critical memories
Bigger than I thought
More than I thought
I can’t remember her name
I can’t name her remainder
Approximate precision
Precise precision
Precise approximation
Approximate proclamation
Appropriate approximation
Approximate appropriation
Approximate appreciation
Appreciated approximation
Clearly approximate
Spot-on inappropriate
Better than approximate

I should have written it down
Inordinate timing in ordinary time
Slowing down in ordinary time
Thank you for watching
I didn’t write it down
Are you seeing what I’m saying?
Are you saying what I’m seeing?
That space that is somewhere between the real and the imagined

Unpredictable planning
Planned unpredictability
Unpredictable planing
Unpredictable de-planing
Unpredictable planting
Planting unpredictably

Magical thinking
The ambiguity of form
The space between
Absence of existence
Absence of nonexistence
Absence and nonexistence
Absence or nonexistence
nonexistence or lack of it
Lack of absence
Lack of absinthe
Lack of existence
Lack of non-existence
Seeing beyond it

Too big for its own goodness
Too good for it’s own bigness
Too bad for it’s own goodness
Too bold for it’s own badness

Without Within

Interrupted thought
I don’t recall
I think it's paper something
Let's see
I wish I knew
It'll come to me in a second
Beats me
Filling in the blanks
Am I just missing something?
Way off base
Devotedly inconsequential
Yet another nihilistic, gamed, cultural moment
Are you entertained?
Does anyone care anymore?
Does it matter?
Do you have any idea what you're talking about?
Did you hear me?
What else..?.

Stuck in the middle with you

Balance in the natural world

First I had it, then I didn't, then I got it again.

A snapshot in time
A snapshot in 3/4 time
A snapshot of half time
A snapshot in real time
A snapshot in overtime
A snapshot in no time
A timeless snapshot

Monumental imagery
Historical amnesia
@ Truths said falsely
@ Falsely said truths

The alternatives to the alternatives are the truth

Evocative confusion
Jumbled elocution
Unnaturally occurring phenomena
I saw it in the paper
I read it in the paper
Paper weight wait
The paper trailer
Looks good on paper
The facts on paper
Paperwork revealed
Paperwork- first cut
Paperwork- choice cuts
Paperwork- cut to the core
Cut until it doesn’t hurt anymore

Memory and fiction
Memory as fiction
Say more, say less
Say less, say more

Fables and facts
Fables and foibles
Foibles and facts
Facts and foibles
Factual foibles
True fables

Heads or tails
Heads or tales
Hades and tiles
Heads and files
Hades and tales
Tales of Hades
Toils of Hades
Tolls of Hades
Hates and tails
Heads and toils

Last chance

Not a box of candy
Off the cutting room floor
Cutting table slam
Cutting room remorse
Conditional release
If they could pay us less they would

Randomly precise
Precisely random
Random precision
Precision randomness
Precisely approximate
Approximately precise
Approximately random

Decisions made, beds unmade
To think or not to think, that is the answer.
Random commitment
Committed randomness
Casual commitment
Arbitrary precision
Precisely arbitrary
Left turn on bad advise
Bad commitment
Unknown outcome
Lesser of two evils
Less than two other evils
Good decision forgotten
Cliff walking
Good until it went worse
Step on the cracks
Always wrong ‘til it’s not
Always good ‘til it’s not
Always right ‘til it’s not
Always dangerous ‘til it’s not
Always great ‘til it’s not
Always around ‘til it’s not
Always bad ’til it’s not

Necessity leads to innovation
Innovation leads to necessity

Shiny objects
The usual suspects
Breaking news
Braking noose
Broken news
Broken olds
Breaking badly
Breaking goodly
Breaking Bigly
The story
The story of the story
A funny thing about the story
The ever changing story
Pony down and Giddy- up
Pony up and giddy- down
Pony up and get ye down

future events affect the past
future events effect the past
Deliberate spontaneity

“Reality does not exist if you are not looking at it.”
- Andrew Truscott, professor of physics at Australian National University


A Able Apple
E Easy Effort
I Idea Inner
O Opal Opt
U Used Under

Rip Tide
Rid Ride
Rip Ripe
Dip Dire
Dip Tire
Hip Fire
Lip Sire


I like to work in an intuitive manner without any clear idea of the finished work instead letting the process direct the finished form of the work.
Liam Hennessy
Fugue, Painting, Acrylic on Canvas
$575.00* · In stock


The Undiscussed Sexual Exploitation Buried in Matisse’s Odalisque Paintings
“It contextualizes the painter’s distinctive interpretation,” as if we have not heard and seen that enough times already.
Lorissa Rinehart

The virtue of simplicity

Not everything that counts can be counted,
And not everything that’s counted really counts.
— Albert Einstein

Retrain, adapt, improvise

“In the end we will remember not the words of our enemy,
but the silence of our friends.”?
—?Martin Luther King, Jr.
“The greatest problem in communication … is the illusion
that it has been accomplished.”
— G.B. Shaw

“Nurture all that is authentic
by acknowledging three simple realities:
nothing lasts,
nothing is finished,
and nothing is perfect."
— Richard R. Powell

The virtue of simplicity

Not everything that counts can be counted,
And not everything that’s counted really counts.
— Albert Einstein

Retrain, adapt, improvise

“In the end we will remember not the words of our enemy,
but the silence of our friends.”?
—?Martin Luther King, Jr.
“The greatest problem in communication … is the illusion
that it has been accomplished.”
— G.B. Shaw

“Nurture all that is authentic
by acknowledging three simple realities:
nothing lasts,
nothing is finished,
and nothing is perfect."
— Richard R. Powell

“You think you know what I mean, like I think I know what I said”
artist/cartoonist Robert Williams

“If paying too much is your only problem, you don’t have a problem. ” he said, revealing an old secret of the trade.

You cain’t save what you ain’t got.
You Cain’t Lose What You Ain’t Never Had.
— Muddy Waters

everything looks like everything
- Larissa Pham re: Sarah Lucas’ installation

Are you seein’ what I’m sayin’?
A painting is simply a screen between the producer and the spectator where both can look at the thought processes residing on the screen from different angles and points in time. It enables me to look at the residue of my thinking.
—Katharina Grosse

The Auction Price of an Artwork Is Directly Related to How Much Blue or Red Is in It, a New Study Finds
Blue and red actually make green, it seems.
Tim Schneider, March 13, 2019

You show yourself, it’s a risk. You take the risk of being rejected. If you have pretensions to being an artist of any kind, you have to take the risk of people rejecting you and thinking you’re an asshole. Well, that’s crap. You may think it is, but it’s me.
- Roger Waters, Pink Floyd

I don’t think you can talk about art and get anywhere. I think you can only look at it.
- Jasper Johns

The unknown is more exciting than the known, but that doesn’t necessarily mean it’s more valuable.
-Tim Schneider
Art Business Reporter

Focusing on what I’m doing or thinking, not on what I’m saying.

David Copperfield Statue of Liberty disappear

I am open to failure in my work. I am not afraid to make mistakes that might be a learning experience.
- R Shipps

This is the way it has always been. This is an eat or be eaten world

... rejection of technology


Detail adds legitimacy - tells more of the story. Detail takes a deep dive into the content. Detail gets specific.
- R Shipps

We are looking at two sides of a dichotomy. There are no wrong questions. There are no wrong answers.
- R Shipps

I don’t write the stories, I just set the stage and the dialogue begins
R Shipps.

Complexity is derived from a small group of very simple forms. The interaction of these forms creates pattern structures and complexity.
- R Shipps

“Paintings show what isn’t there.”
- Gerhard Richter

“We do with our lives what we can, and then we die. And what else is there? “
- Francis Bacon

“ It’s like watching somebody walking a tight rope to see if they succeed or fail.“
- Damien Hirst on Francis Bacon

There’s a fool at every poker game, and if you don’t know who it is, it’s you.
- David Frum

“E pur si muove” (and yet it moves) “It doesn’t matter what you believe, these are the facts”
(The Earth revolves around the Sun, not the Sun around the Earth).
- Galileo to the Pope

I still think science is looking for answers and art is looking for questions
- Mark Quinn

Coincidence requires a lot of planning.
- Malcolm Nance

You cain’t save what you ain’t got.
You cain’t lose what you ain’t never had.
- Muddy Waters

If you don’t go over the top, how are you ever going to see what’s on the other side?
- Jim Steinman (Bat Out of Hell, The Musical)

The way it should be and the way it is
- R Shipps
Random, spontaneous, deliberate, and precise
- R Shipps

Dancing in the Counterform

The fact that the blade creates such a precise line, or delineation of form, results in a precise kind of statement. Even random spontaneous cuts can create an authority that somehow tells a story beyond what the artist consciously planned.
- R Shipps

It’s all about balance. We all seek balance in our daily lives - The Yin and the Yang. The in and the out. The up and the down. The inside and the outside. The yes and the no. I seek imagery that balances the form with the counter-form. For every thing that “is”, we find a few related “isn’t” parts nearby. That “isn’t” part, is usually more complex and interesting than the “is” part. Usually the “isn’t” part carries over into other “isn’t” parts. It is sometimes written off as background. Is it a bridge between seen and nothingness? That can be pretty interesting too.
When you look up into a tree and see the sky, do you look at the intertwining branches or do you see the myriad shapes of pieces of sky and their commonality as revealed by the tree itself?
- R Shipps


defense and attack
target and source

A viewer observes himself observing.

The literalism of 1960s Formalism has been replaced by an insistence on the factual, which leaves little room for the imagination or for speculation.
- John Yau

Amazing Facts 

If you yelled for 8 years, 7 months and 6 days you would have produced enough sound energy to heat one cup of coffee.. 

(Hardly seems worth it.) 

If you farted consistently for 6 years and 9 months, enough gas is produced to create the energy of an atomic bomb. 
(Now that's more like it!) 
The human heart creates enough pressure when it pumps out of the body to squirt blood 30 feet. 

A pig's orgasm lasts 30 minutes. 
Is that why they are always squealing? 
A cockroach will live nine days without its head before it starves to death.  (Creepy) 

(I'm still not over the pig.) 

Banging your head against a wall uses 150 calories an hour. 
(Don't try this at home;  maybe at work.) 
The male praying mantis cannot copulate while its head is attached to its body.  The female initiates sex by ripping the male's head off. 
(Honey,  I'm home .  What the...?) 

The flea can jump 350 times its body length. It's like a human jumping the length of a football field. 
(30 minutes.  Lucky pig!  Can you imagine?) 
The catfish has over 27,000 taste buds. 
(What could be so tasty on the bottom of a pond?) 

Some lions mate over 50 times a day. 
(I still can't believe that pig ....quality over quantity.)   

Butterflies taste with their feet. 
(Something I always wanted to know.) 
The strongest muscle in the body is the tongue. 

(Hmmmmmm.......)  I knew it, I knew it
Right-handed people live, on average, nine years longer than left-handed people. 

(If you're ambidextrous,  do you split the difference?) 
Elephants are the only animals that cannot jump. 
(Okay,  so that would be a good thing.)   
A cat's urine glows under a black light. 

(I wonder how much the government paid to figure that out.) 

An ostrich's eye is bigger than its brain. 
(I know some people like that.) 
Starfish have no brains. 
(I know some people like that,  too.) 
Polar bears are left-handed. 

(If they switch,  they'll live a lot longer.) 

Humans and dolphins are the only species that have sex for pleasure. 

(What about that pig?  Do the dolphins know about the pig?) 
Now that you've smiled at least once, it's your turn to spread these crazy facts and send this to someone you want to bring a smile to, maybe even a chuckle. 

(and l love that pig!) 

- Robin Eichele