‘…Wheater presents a counter argument for a return to a society that is almost devoid of a manufacturing base. His work questions the relevance of the natural world and the place of traditional skills in light of rampant consumerism and a culture of selfishness in society.’
Peter Bonell, Curator, Exhibitions and Education at ArtSway, 2009
‘…Richard is working in the same mimetic tradition as popular landscape painters as varied as Turner and Landseer, or Durer and Shephard (yes, David Shephard). But while those artists (or anyway, their admirers) claim to see something at least as admirable in painterly canvases as the things they represent, the glass-blower-cum-interventionist is baldly stating the opposite.
This is definitely 'modern art'. …It has the craft demanded by traditionalists, and the layers of irony demanded by (post)modernists’.
Vic Allen, Arts Director, Dean Clough Galleries, 2009
'Wheater’s project appealed to Yorkshire Sculpture Park because it considers the complexities of man’s relationship with nature, of our impulses to care for it yet need to take from it to survive, but ultimately because it is a work of contemporary art of the highest standard that enables the viewer to consider its implications with wider eyes.'
Dr Helen Pheby, Deputy Curator, Yorkshire Sculpture Park
'Studio glass artist, neon artist and performance and installation artist rolled into one, Richard Wheater is one of a growing number of creative individuals moving effortlessly between disciplines, challenging boundaries and cherrypicking what they need. He explores the natural environment and our place in it through narrative, in works leaving us both thoughtful and curious. Like many in this area, much of his work is ephemeral, so he has photographers capture the moment. His pieces range from one-off chandeliers to such performance pieces as Burning Fat, in which members of a weight-loss group can only illuminate neon lights by fast pedalling their exercise bikes.'
Geraldine Rudge, Crafts Magazine, January/February 2010