Richard Galusha Retrospective: An Artist’s Journey
Painter Richard Galusha is honored with a retrospective that looks back on his 35-year career painting the West.
Steamboat Springs, CO
Now open at the Steamboat Art Museum in Steamboat Springs, Colorado, is Richard Galusha Retrospective: An Artist’s Journey, a new exhibition to celebrate the 35-year career of Western painter Richard Galusha.
The painter, who has lived in the Steamboat Springs area since 1986, is featuring 70 works from all corners of his long career in the exhibition, which is his first retrospective. The show will focus on his path as an artist, which largely began in Texas, where he lived on a ranch with a large family and many siblings.
“Being in a large family, everyone had their niche and mine was art,” Galusha says, adding that he remembers artwork by Wayne Baize in his home growing up. “I remember having an art show in the fifth grade and all the other kids knew I liked to draw. I would even draw on the chalkboard. It all started early for me. And they didn’t have art classes in elementary school back then. I had to do it on my own.”
After high school, Galusha joined the Navy and was later stationed in Guam, where he would set up a makeshift studio in the barracks and do small drawings for his sailor friends. It was in Guam that everything finally came together in his head. “I was walking down a path on the island and it was nighttime and I remember suddenly knowing exactly what I needed to do,” he says. “When I got out I went to the University of Colorado, got a degree in fine arts, went out on my own and have been doing pretty good ever since.”
While his art has steadily progressed, early on he supplemented his artist’s income through teaching—“something had to pay for the house payment, car payments, insurance and art supplies,” he says—and he found it brought him immense joy as he instructed students and helped them with their own work. As a testament to that period of his career, he will be showing several students’ works in the retrospective of his own paintings.
In addition to artist and teacher, Galusha has also had firsthand experience with another aspect of the art world—gallery owner. He and his wife own and operate the Wildhorse Gallery in Steamboat Springs.
“I’ve seen the art world from all sides,” he says, adding that choosing artwork for the exhibition was a difficult and time-consuming process. “Hell, I did a lot of painting. I still do a lot of painting. When picking the pieces for the show, some of them really show a lot of growth, which is rewarding to see. It’s fun to see all the places I’ve painted, including things right out of my door.”
Spring in Hans Peak Village, oil
Haybales in Summer, oil, 32 x 38”
Choosing Horses, oil, 36 x 48”
Four Bears, oil