Richard Penn started working at DKW in 2010 on a series of monotypes. Using nature magazines and images captured by the Hubble Telescope as his references, he immersed himself in exploring the simultaneity of macroscopic and microscopic scale in his artworks. Looking at scale and distance depicted on a single sheet of paper, Penn illustrates how within a single dot the representation of an atom could, in that simultaneous instant, also be a scaled section of the galaxy.
The minute dots forming the soft grey areas of his monoprints capture the images of deep space and simultaneously become reminiscent of static seen on television in its quality. This static is said to be a result of radiation that is still travelling through space after the birth of the universe, also known as the Big Bang. The artist investigates our limited understanding of reality in terms of scale and distance.
Penn is a self-taught animator with a Masters Degree in Fine Art, with distinction, from the University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg. In 1997 he was awarded 3rd place in the PPC Young Concrete Sculptor Award. After completing his honours degree in 1998, majoring in painting with distinction he developed and taught an animation course for 1st, 2nd and 3rd years in the Fine Arts Department at Wits University.
In 2004 he was awarded the overall winners prize in The Sasol New Signatures Art Competition. In 2002 he accepted the position of Head of Animation at AFDA Johannesburg (The South African School for Motion Picture Medium and Live Performance) and maintained that position until 2009. In 2010 he started STRANGE Blue duck, an animation training company which teaches stop frame animation to children from 9 years and up and facilitates corporate animation team-building and creative enrichment workshops.