Curtis Ripley was born in Lubbock, Texas in 1949. He attended Texas Tech University, where he received an undergraduate degree in Fine Art. After marrying Cindy Turner, the couple moved to Madison, Wisconsin, where Curtis received his Masters degree in Fine Art. He enjoyed several teaching positions, first at Purdue University and then a tenured position at Virginia Commonwealth University.
While living in Richmond, Curtis began exhibiting extensively in New York and Washington DC. In 1983, he had his first exhibition in Los Angeles, and in 1985 he moved permanently to California.
Ripley’s paintings have always presented the viewer a space where images are as important as the depth of the atmosphere in which they exist – these most recent works are the most abstract of his career. The images are more evocative than literal, leaving the viewer with the sensation of entering an autonomous painting world in constant motion. These new works are snapshots of the ethereal, yet the quality of a conscious poetic arrangement of images persists through the careful placement of smears, lines, scribbles and collage. These paintings are enigmatic compositions of images that relate to each other by their placement, identity and emotional content, raising the paintings to a level of poetic expression.