Artwork by Don Reichert,  Warm Resonance - Gold Creek

Don Reichert
Warm Resonance - Gold Creek

acrylic on canvas
signed, titled and dated 1997 on the stretcher
40 x 68 ins ( 101.6 x 172.7 cms )

Auction Estimate: $2,000.00$1,500.00 - $2,000.00

Price Realized $1,440.00
Sale date: November 30th 2021

Estate of the Artist, Winnipeg
Private Collection, Winnipeg

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Don Reichert
(1932 - 2013) RCA

While primarily a painter in the abstract expressionist tradition, Don Reichert was also notable as a photographer and digital media artist. Born in Libau, Manitoba in 1932 to parents who had immigrated from Austria, he studied art at the University of Manitoba 1953-57, San Miguel de Allende, Mexico 1957-58), and St. Ives, UK 1962-63.

From the late 1950s through the early 2000s Reichert exhibited regularly. Highlights include:
1962, Don K. Reichert, Beaverbrook Gallery
1968, Don Reichert and George Wood, National Gallery of Canada
1974, Reichert Centennial Exhibit, Winnipeg Art Gallery
1983, RCA Exhibit Paintings from the Landscape, Winnipeg Art Gallery
1992, Retrospective, Winnipeg Art Gallery
1992, Headcount, Art Gallery of Southwestern Manitoba
2000, Rough Jazz: Painting on the Rocks, Grand Forks Art Gallery, BC
2005, Nature Morph, Canadian Embassy in Washington, DC
2005, Bridge Reconstruction, Confederation Centre of the Arts, PEI
2008, Idot and Megapixels: Reichert and Ewa Tarsia, Buhler Gallery

He taught in the School of Art at the University of Manitoba for over two decades, and was esteemed by students as a thoughtful instructor. After retirement he was granted Emeritus status.

His early career earned praise from renowned critic Clement Greenberg, among others. Reichert moved on to produce work that is held in many notable public, corporate and private collections, including the National Gallery of Canada, the Art Gallery of Ontario, the Montreal Museum of Fine Art, and the Canada Council Art Bank, the Winnipeg Art Gallery, the University of Manitoba School of Art, and the Buhler Gallery among others.

Reichert's early work drew on European modernism, and American abstraction. Later significant strands of his work included techniques of Japanese Sumi calligraphy which he applied throughout his career often in combination with colour field composition and later with his ground breaking use of adopting direct physical characteristics of the Precambrian Shield on his large canvases. He also explored pre-contact Mayan skull motifs to represent life and death of the individual and of a population, which coincided with “Desert Storm” in Iraq.

Multimedia works include photographs that have been painted over, often with elegant splattering or dripping evoking, and emulating gestures seen and felt in nature, or composed into montaged geometric suites of photographs. Reichert used his pilot’s license and painter’s eye to take aerial photographs, capturing compositions of agriculture and infrastructure which betray their original context.

His late career delved deeply into digital photography, using images from nature and the urban landscape, transforming them, finding whim in logarithmic chance.

Reichert was also a founding member of the arts magazine Border Crossing and a senior artist in the artist run SITE Gallery in Winnipeg (1995-2005).

His career to 1994 was summarized and published in “Don Reichert-A Life in Work” by Meeka Walsh, Robert Enright, Shirley Madill and Robert MaCaskill, Winnipeg Art Gallery, 1995.
In 2022 Reichert’s work will be included a book titled “Western Voices in Canadian Art” by Patricia Bovey. A planned monograph by the same author is scheduled for 2025-2026.

Don Reichert died in September 2013.

We extend our thanks to the estate of the artist for the preceding essay.