Rick Araluce

Rick headshot by Daniel Carrillo
photo by Daniel Carrilo

Growing up in Encino, California, Rick Araluce explored many different artistic methods and media. He has worked for many years in the realm of miniatures, though his former position as lead scenic artist for the Seattle Opera also allowed him to create on a larger scale. Araluce’s captivating sculptures and installations often emphasize themes of nostalgia, emptiness, tension, darkness, and hidden narrative, and have evolved to include elements of sound, light and motion. As a direct result of his work at MadArt Studio, in 2017 Araluce created a massive, immersive, installation environment which was commissioned for the Renwick Gallery of the Smithsonian American Art Museum. He also created artistic environments for Hotel Greene, an immersive, indoor miniature golf course in Richmond, VA. He is represented by Roq La Rue Gallery in Seattle, as well as several other national galleries. His achievements include the Pollock/Krasner Foundation support grant (2008), the Adolph and Esther Gottlieb Foundation Award (2009), and a Guggenheim fellowship (2015).

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The Great Northern, 2015-2016

wood, foam, fabric, earth, paint

In the winter of 2015, Rick Araluce created a replica of The Great Northern train tunnel, which still runs beneath downtown Seattle. When it opened in 1905, it was the highest and widest tunnel in the US. Rick’s version was about half scale, filling MadArt’s studio. Viewers found themselves immersed in a sensory experience that incorporated light and sound, creating a mysterious illusion. The Great Northern was constructed at MadArt Studio from October through December, and the finished work was open to the public from January 17th through February 27th, 2016.

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