John Richter 
Fine Art Gallery | VailDaily.com

John Richter 
Fine Art Gallery

225 wall street  |  vail  •  970.476.4507  •  richterfineartphotography.com

featuring John Richter

Through the vast dimensions and luminosity of his photographs, John Richter transports people directly to the lush greens and restorative blues of tropical islands; the ever-changing reds and browns of deep canyons; the clear, frozen fragments floating near Iceland, and, of course, the snowy — or flowering — mountain reaches of Colorado.

"I've always been in awe of nature and the planet we live on," Richter says.

“For me, nature is a place I can be completely present, in the moment, in the here and now,” he says. “It’s just a place where I find my center. The wilderness is my cathedral.”

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His photographs, which sometimes span up 8 feet high and a total of 20 feet wide within five panels, attest to his intimate relationship with the land upon which he walks.

Travel plays a key role in both his inspiration as an artist and his sanity as a gallery owner, first in Telluride in 2009, and now in Vail. He steps away from his business to simply focus upon capturing images with his large-format field cameras for at least three months a year. His world travels give him a new lease on life, and also extend his clientele globally.

Richter grew up in rural Michigan, immersed in fine art classes. But when he discovered photography at age 17, it "engaged me in the world in a way that I hadn't previously experienced," he says. "It perked my interest in being alive entirely."

Since then, he's watched his homeland turn into a suburb, and that fact alone motivates him to tell stories, like that of global warming in his Iceland series, of the importance of nature.

"The camera is a great vehicle,
a catalyst, for experiencing nature, and having a purpose while doing
it," he says.

It's his composition, his ability to convey stories and connect people with his subject matter, and his innovative printing technique that all add up to brilliant pieces of fine art. He was one of the first to employ, and master, Fuji's Silver Crystal Archive, which burns the image into the emulsion; silver within the emulsion reflects light back toward the eye in a stunning and incomparable manner.

Meanwhile, in the gallery, he attributes his success to showcasing his work in various locations, from Jackson Hole to Las Vegas, and understanding clients' preferences, as well as being hands-on, personally involved in every aspect of the gallery business, from designing and constructing frames to building the space's furniture and finishes.

Since 2004, his signature work has garnered acclaim from the photographic community, but it hit a pinnacle when the Smithsonian Museum of Natural History invited him to exhibit his "Teton Meadow," which was part of a larger exhibit celebrating 50 years of American wilderness. It remains a collectors' favorite at the gallery, which he owns and operates with his wife, Dawn. The live auction of his piece helped raise funds for the Carter Center, which points to another passion of Richter's: promoting positive change, environmental and social justice, and the journey of self-awareness through the study of beauty.