Richard Halliday’s (1939-2011) proclivity for painting manifested itself early on. Born in Vancouver, he opted for the Vancouver School of Art, where he attended classes alongside Jack Shadbolt and other prominent figures of the nascent Canadian art scene. On graduation, he spent time in Mexico, then at the Brandon Allied Art Centre, Concordia University, and the Montreal Museum School of Art and Design. Eventually he became a teacher at the Alberta College of Art and Design, where he worked for 25 years.
As an artist, Halliday is delightful in how he engages the viewer in abrupt and dramatic ways. When you look at one of his paintings it’s almost as if you are part of the physical process of creation. The energy on the canvas transfers to the viewer and you swear that the work is coming together right before your eyes. Halliday uses the word “kinetic” to describe the experience: “The initial line trajectories are lightly applied so that they take an immediate recessive position to those that come over and above. The initial drawing of the line originates with an unconscious magnified scribbling technique used originally by the surrealists and later by many abstract expressionist artists”.