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APSU's The New Gallery presents Echoes by Rick Griffith, Acuff Chair of Excellence

Rick Griffith
Rick Griffith

CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. – Austin Peay State University’s The New Gallery, with support from The Center of Excellence for the Creative Arts and the Department of Art + Design, continues the 2022-23 exhibition season with Echoes, an exhibition by Acuff Chair of Excellence Rick Griffith. 

Rick Griffith is a graphic designer and master letterpress printer. His work is an erudite exploration of language, history, politics, science, music, and ethics—typographically-focused and relevant,” states director of The New Gallery, Michael Dickins. “Known as a passionate advocate for design, Griffith joins us this semester as the Acuff Chair of Excellence teaching a course entitled Design History Praxis. 

“We haven’t had a design-centric exhibition in a while, so I’m excited to present various bodies of work by Griffith,” Dickins continues. “This exhibition hits you with color and will give a breadth of Griffith’s design practice and philosophies.”  

The exhibit opens on Monday, Feb. 20, and runs through March 24 at The New Gallery, located in the Art + Design building on the APSU campus. 

Griffith will give an artist lecture about his work and creative practice on Wednesday, March 1, at 6 p.m. in Heydel Hall – room 120 of the Art + Design building. The New Gallery will also host a reception for Echoes on March 2, during Clarksville’s First Thursday Art Walk, beginning at 5:30 p.m. Griffith will be in attendance. 

Both events are free and open to the public. 

Hours for The New Gallery are Monday – Friday, 9 a.m. – 4 p.m., closed on weekends and holidays, and the gallery follows the university’s academic calendar. For more information on this exhibition, contact Dickins at dickinsm@apsu.edu. 

About the Artist: 

Rick was born and raised in Southeast London and immigrated to the U.S. in the late 1980s. It was his early jobs at Washington D.C. record stores that turned him on to graphic design. It was a (short) freelance career on Madison Avenue which funded his first practice, RGD (Rick Griffith Design), and it is his love of design (and his partner Debra Johnson) which sustains the design practice MATTER, which, over the last two decades, has grown into an ambidextrous design consultancy, print shop, workshop, and retail bookstore. 

As Design Director at MATTER, Rick works across all media for business, culture, and civic engagement with his partner and staff. MATTER’s broad range of clients includes restaurants, beverage manufacturers and distributors, politicians, universities, architects, engineers, arts venues, mimes, scientists, government agencies, and entrepreneurs 

Rick has lectured at—among other places—University of Louisville Hite Art Institute, University of Southern California Roski School of Design, Montana State University, South Dakota State University, University of Texas, Austin, University of Minnesota, Duluth, and the Hamilton Wood Type and Printing Museum. He has served as an adjunct professor at the University of Denver, University of Colorado, Denver, and has been a visiting artist at the Rocky Mountain College of Art + Design and the Academy of Arts, Architecture, and Design in Prague (UMPRUM). He has been a speaker at TEDxBoulder, Creative Mornings, and Denver Startup Week. He frequently gives advice and critiques to design students and recent graduates. 

Rick’s work has been exhibited at Columbia College Center for Book, Paper, and Print, the Boulder Museum of Contemporary Art, and the Denver Art Museum. His work is represented in the permanent collections of the Denver Art Museum, the Tweed Museum of Art, and the Butler Library of Rare Books and Manuscripts at Columbia University. It has been celebrated by the Type Directors Club, Print Magazine, Dwell, and AIGA 50 Books | 50 Covers. Rick has designed and curated three exhibits on typography and letterpress printing and served as a curator and designer of exhibitions for AIGA National. He was inducted into the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences in 2001. 

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