Announcing Richard Shields (EVF)- The Curfew Tower- IMPOSE||LIFT Artist in Residence. 

We are pleased to announce that Richard Shields has been sent to The Curfew Tower prison from which he aims to rise through the ranks of his own organisation- The EVF. Richard has been selected due to his approach of blurring lines between his life and work- he describes “carrying out residencies in his own life.” Richard’s work becomes an unfolding document of his passage through this world often opening us up to fictional worlds and warping perceptions. Exploration via drawing and performance art bring together the live and the laboured processes that constitute his new worlds that lend from art history, personal history and local history often drawing the audience into the process. 

Richard Shields is a Manchester based artist in that much of his early career involved responding to sites located in the city, surround by a local peer group. The artist went on to develop a studio practice referencing personal situations from his life there, however Shields is not from Manchester. Originally from Bangor, County Down in Northern Ireland, Shields moved to Manchester looking for something different.

Having been brought up, unbaptized in an apolitical house by parents of Catholic and Protestant heritage Shields was not influenced by one of the country’s prominent political or religious viewpoints, which resulted in a diminished sense of national identity and tribal unity.

Growing up in Northern Ireland in the 80’s and 90’s Shields was witness to news reports of violent acts, political speeches, heavy police and army presence, bonfires, marches, sectarian graffiti drawn on random objects and painted on community walls and stories of mysterious characters who would go in and out of prison throughout ‘the troubles’ only to find a new lease of life, leaving prison behind them.