'I moved in on September 1 and hired an army of Task Rabbits to make it perfect fast.'
Usually when I'm showcasing the work of artist Richard Rothstein, the location is New York. The streets, the rivers, the architecture, archways and alley's. Richard is passionate about the city he lives in, and his pride and love for his sprawling metropolitan studio. Regardless of which stunning male model may be in focus, the city remains a scene stealing co-star.
Richard's love for home is easy to understand, especially given the past week. New York holds not only millions of people, it also in many ways holds the history and experiences of countless others, both present and past. Even before my first visit, New York was in my references, from movies, books and TV. No matter what was going on, from a personal experience to a holiday, it was usually accompanied by a New York visual.
If you have paid attention to my many stories focused on Richard's work, you know he seldom works inside, and when he does, it is with reluctance. Coaxing models to shoot naked when the wind chill is -10 is a daunting task and although I have seen shots that prove Richard has been successful, the winter months have called working inside, somewhere with a roof, a heating source, and walls and doors keeping the wind, snow and cold at bay.
Richard rose to the challenge finding some some great spaces. I have featured works interior work in warehouses, vacant buildings and apartments. Most are empty, void of furniture, plants and the personal touches you'd expect if someone was living there. For this shoot, the surrounding are more intimate and personal. On September 1st, for the first time in 27 years, Richard moved into a space, his new home.
'According to my friends, one customarily throws a housewarming party. Too late I learned that such an event involves multiple friends and acquaintances, pigs in a blanket, sushi, cheeses, wines, whiskey, vodka and perhaps a signature cocktail. As it turned out, this housewarming thing; I did it my way. I would note in my defense that I made Nigel breakfast, including freshly ground coffee.'
Some of you may remember Nigel from his previous appearance on FH. Nigel looks right at home hanging out in Richard's new space, lounging on his furniture and surrounding by Richard's belongings. Like all of Richard's images, the detail is immense and Nigel acts as a visual tour guide as he makes his way through each room.
When I first saw the shots, I couldn't believe that Richard had just moved in. It already looks like a home, as if he has lived their for years, even decades. Richard attributes that to his army of task rabbits, although my guess is they had supervisor who knew exactly where everything belonged.
As with his outside work when shooting the city, Richard's shots are brimming with detail, and my eye was drawn 'everywhere'. Starting with Nigel ad moving to the incredible outside window views. Then, to the knick knacks and artwork on the walls, the stacks of books already piled and overflowing from the shelves. I couldn't help but notice how similar Richard's new space was to the city on the other side of the windows. Busy, bustling, beautiful. Even Richard's line of piled up books looked like the skyline of a row of buildings along a busy New York street.