Richard Bell was born in 1953 in Charleville, Queensland, and is a member of the Kamilaroi, Kooma, Jiman and Gurang Gurang communities. Based in Brisbane, Richard has held numerous solo exhibitions since 1990. He is represented in major collections in Australia and New Zealand and is internationally recognised through numerous exhibitions, including the significant European touring exhibition Aratjara: art of the First Australians (1993); Culture Warriors, the National Indigenous Art Triennial, National Gallery of Australia (2007); the 9th and 16th Biennales of Sydney (1992 and 2008); Australian Perspecta (1993), Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, the Unfamiliar Territory, Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art (1991) and Half-Light: Portraits from Black Australia at the Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney.
His work was the subject of the survey exhibition Positivity, presented by the Institute of Modern Art, Brisbane, (2006). He won the National Telstra Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Art Award in 2003. In 2009, an exhibition of the Bell’s practice to date entitled I am not sorry, was held at Location One, New York, and he was also the recipient of Location One’s International Fellowship for that year. Uz vs. them, a major touring exhibition of Bell’s work organised by the American Federation of the Arts, premiered at Tufts University, Boston, in September 2011, and will tour to venues across North America throughout 2013. The exhibition is accompanied by a major new publication on Bell’s work.
Richard Bell’s work features in the collections of the National Gallery of Canada, Ottawa, the National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney, as well as most state institutions. He is represented by Milani Gallery, Brisbane.