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history in the making

Lack Round.png
Richard F. Lack
Founding Father
2019 is a significant year for
The Atelier studio program of fine arts

It marks 50 Years of Teaching the Atelier tradition in Minneapolis
and it marks a decade since the passing of its founder
Richard F. Lack
The Legacy of Richard F. Lack
Lack Raisonne

According to Gary Christensen, author of the 500 page Catalogue Raisonne on Richard F. Lack, Richard was one of the most important and distinguished artists, as well as one of the most significant American realists of the last half of the 20th Century. 

During his art career, he completed more than 1,300 paintings, drawings, sketches, studies, etchings, woodcuts and watercolors. 

In1969, he founded Atelier Lack which later became The Atelier Studio Program of Fine Art. He taught hundreds of students by the time he retired in 1992.

Richard Lack coined the term, "Classical Realism" and helped organize The American Society of Classical Realism. He founded the Classical Realism Quarterly which became the Classical Realism Journal

Richard F. Lack passed away in 2009, leaving behind a legacy that is worthy of honoring in the form of a dedicated Center for the Arts in his name.

By Author Gary Christensen
Creating old world masters
for a new world future
Cyd Wicker Photo
Cyd Wicker
Dale Redpath
Dale Redpath
Portrait in Gray and Red
Portrait in Gray and Red
by Dale Redpath
Carrying the Torch

In 1992, Cyd Wicker and Dale Redpath took over direction of the school. Both were students of Lack who taught side by side with him for nine years before his retirement.


In 1994, Cyd and Dale relocated the school and renamed it The Atelier Studio Program of Fine Arts. Since then, they have taught nearly 200 students and pursued their own successful painting careers.


Cyd Wicker specializes in portraitature. She has painted US Presidents, Judges and Clergy in addition to other private commissions. Her paintings can be found in public and private collections.

Dale Redpath specialized in portraits and still lifes. Her paintings can be found in private as well as public collections. 

In 2017, Dale retired from teaching and painting. Cyd has continued to carry the torch as full-time director of the school.

Cyd's Paintings
Cyd Wicker in her Studio
Classical Realist Movement
"This is a rare moment in art hisotry because we're living all living in the springtime of a
major art movement - the resurgence of realism." 
                                                                                       -----   B. Eric Rhoads,
                                                      Chairman/Publisher Fine Art Connoisseur Magazine
Building Upon a Strong Foundation

The Atelier tradition dates back to the Renaissance, before the time of Michelangelo and Leonardo DaVinci where Master taught student and student then became Master. It was the quintessential apprentice program.


The rigorous study of form and structure, sight-sizing, shading, tone, values, color, composition and other technical skills taught in The Atelier tradition has historically generated more masters of fine arts than any other art education program ever developed. The success of this 500+ year old tradition continues today and Ateliers can now be found in 11 countries around the globe.  

Now more than ever, art students recognize the importance and the value of an art education built on the foundation of Classical Realism. As the twenty-first century progresses and technology becomes more intertwined with not only our lives, but our art, it is even more important that artists of the future have a solid foundation from which to develop and refine their skills. This is vividly apparent in latest and growing genre of illustration and fantasy art. At The Atelier Studio Program of Fine Arts, we are Creating Old World Masters for a New World Future.

Cyd Wicker Photo
Cyd Wicker
Director of The Atelier
Studio Program of Fine Arts
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