b. 1954 - ?
After leaving secondary school, Richard Nie took a job in an office, but this did not suit him, and he embarked on a series of part-time jobs; currently he works as a gardener. As a young adult he began to suffer from serious depression and rarely left the family home, spending his nights drawing and playing the guitar (music and drawing have a close relationship for him), and his days sleeping. In the early 1980s he was admitted to a therapeutic community, where he participated in art therapy. Low in self-esteem, he destroyed much of his artwork, believing that his drawings had no artistic value. Although Nie achieved recognition as an Outsider artist, this was a label with which he was not very comfortable. At first he described his work as 'doodles' an umbrella under which many people shelter their work and then as 'extended doodles'. He was very encouraged by seeing the work of Paul Klee. In a letter of 1998 he wrote: 'When I think of drawing, I associate it with, EXPRESSION; MEDITATION; METAMORPHOSIS: as in change that happens during a period drawing/as in the change of one’s feeling or mood, during a period of drawing.' In the same letter he referred to drawing having been a 'private language between myself and the pictures'; despite his misgivings about other people eavesdropping on this, he has accepted showing his more 'finished' work, while keeping many smaller drawings 'in a much more ragged; RAW; unfinished state' as a way of 'compensating for all the drawings I have let go of'. 'These', he explained, 'are heads, figures or faces emerging from some kind of automatic-calligraphy sort of action.'