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Rick Herold photographs and papers

 Collection — Box: 1
Identifier: Coll2013-025

Scope and Contents

Photographic prints, negatives, 35mm slides, Herold-designed notecards and calendar, an advance copy of The Naked Artist (a book illustrated and written by Herold), assorted periodicals with Herold interviews, reviews, gallery ephemera, promotional materials, and papers documenting Rick Herold's history as an artist.


  • 1959-2011


Conditions Governing Access

The collection is open to researchers. There are no access restrictions.

Conditions Governing Use

All requests for permission to publish or quote from manuscripts must be submitted in writing to the ONE Archivist. Permission for publication is given on behalf of ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives at USC Libraries as the owner of the physical items and is not intended to include or imply permission of the copyright holder, which must also be obtained.

Biographical/Historical note

Richard (Rick) Herold was born in Cleveland, Ohio in 1941, served in the Navy, and attended the Acadamie Julian in Paris, St. John's University in Minnesota, Otis Art Institute in Los Angeles, and the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). In California, he launched an art magazine while studying architectural arts at Otis and was the official Los Angeles County portrait painter from 1968-1970. Herold worked as a teacher at Pierce College and Los Angeles Junior Colleges before turning the Zephyr Theatre into a studio and center for art happenings, theater, and Esalen group events.

A published author of erotica including The Naked Artist, Rick Herold is best known as a professional artist. His work has been shown at many venues including the Orlando and Molly Barnes galleries in Los Angeles, the Zara Gallery in San Francisco, and in museum collections in Missouri, Colorado, and Oregon. Rick Herold used a variety of media and techniques including painting, reverse painting on plastic, neon, sculpture and tattooing. His artworks commonly dealt with the relationship of the erotic and the spiritual, drawing upon his interests in theology, fine art, Asian mandalas, and East Indian Tantric tankas. Herold was also interested in tribal and folk art which he incorporated into his tattoo designs and paintings. His work in tattoo art was documented in Tattoo, a film collaboration with Michael McCullough.

On his website (, accessed in 2013), Herold discusses notable events in his artistic career, including a commission by Bob Hope to create Stations of the Cross in Cleveland, and his thirty-year retrospective exhibition at the ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives in 2003.


4.2 Linear Feet (1 archive carton, 2 clamshell binders, 1 flat archive box )

Language of Materials



Photographs and papers by and about professional artist, author, and teacher Rick Herold. Herold used a variety of media and techniques including painting, reverse painting on plastic, neon, sculpture, performance art, and tattooing. Many of his works dealt with the relationship of the erotic and the spiritual.


Donated by Rick Herold on July 9, 2011.

Related Materials

Rick Herold artworks catalogued in the ONE art collection

ART2381Bob Ekert [Enamel on Plexiglas]

ART2198 Unknown (buttocks of nude male hunched over) [Ink on paper]

ART2043 Male Nude [Painting - acrylic on vinyl mounted on canvas]

ART2064 Abstract Fold [Painting - acrylic on plexiglas]

9AR0002 Samson DeBrier [Painting on Plexiglass]

ART2142 John Parker (aka Buddah John) [Painting on Plexiglass box]

Separated Materials note

Posters separated into the ONE poster collection

Molly Barnes Gallery, "In the Garden of Earthly Delights"

Orlando Gallery, "Portrait Paintings Revealing Human Auras & Astral Colors" (signed copy)

Processing Information

Collection processed by Jeff Snapp, 2013.

Finding aid to the Rick Herold Photographs and Papers, 1959-2011
Jeff Snapp
(c) 2013
Description rules
Describing Archives: A Content Standard
Language of description
Script of description
Language of description note
Description is in English.
Processing this collection has been funded by a generous grant from the National Historical Publications and Records Commission.

Repository Details

Part of the ONE Archives at the USC Libraries, University of Southern California Repository

909 West Adams Boulevard
Los Angeles California 90007 United States
(213) 821-2771