Richard Woods, Holiday Home, commissioned by the Creative Foundation for Folkestone Triennial 2017. Image by Thierry Bal.
Promoting a town as ‘a good place to live’ is often left to developers and estate agents – for instance, advertisements for holiday homes. While the media and construction industries constantly suggest there is a ‘housing crisis’ (so increasing the price of land and housing), the booming market in ‘second homes’ represents a crisis not of housing supply but of economic inequality. Many people have two homes whilst many others can’t afford one. Holiday Home (six one-third size ‘homes’ identical except in their colourways) is in ‘unlikely’ places – suggesting that no site is too small, too unlikely, or too inconvenient for its neighbours, for a holiday home.
Richard Woods trained as a sculptor but would rather think of his work in terms of surfaces – he has always been fascinated with architectural surfaces that are already at one remove from reality. His architectural interventions are chiefly concerned with the re-surfacing of existing structures, and they propose an absurd twist on the cult of home improvement and DIY aesthetics while consistently reducing surface to an instantly recognisable representation of itself.
Over the past few years, he has designed a sensational interior for the Comme des Garçons flagship store in Osaka, orchestrated the mock Tudor overhaul of a private residence in New York and transformed the interior of Cary Grant’s former Hollywood residence. In 2003, his re-paving of a cloistered courtyard was the centrepiece of The Henry Moore Foundation’s exhibition at the 50th International Venice Biennale of Art.
Major exhibitions and projects include Duckweave, Eastside Projects, Birmingham, UK (2016); WRONGWOODS, Victoria and Albert Museum, London, UK (2009); Superabundance Turner Contemporary Margate, UK (2009); Liverpool Biennial, UK (2008). Works by Richard Woods are held in major collections including the Saatchi Collection, Arts Council England, Victoria & Albert Museum and the British Museum.
Richard Woods graduated from the Slade School of Fine Art in 1990. He lives and works in London.