Made On Earth — In the Round

Craft & Design


From a small town in the Black Hills of South Dakota, Dick Termes turns his artist’s eye to the globe. Literally. No flat surfaces for this painter; rather, his Termespheres invite the observer into another dimension that allows us to perceive the world as if in real time.

Imagine you’re in a beautiful building and you rotate slowly around to see every surface — the walls, the ceiling, the floor. Now you’re Termes, so you use six-point perspective to paint this total view on the outside of a sphere. Six-point allows you to draw the total — up, down, and all around — scene.

Over the past 32 years, Termes has painted rooms, buildings, towns, nature, and a myriad of subjects from this unique perspective. “In art, the most important thing to find is an original thing to do,” he says. “The sphere adds a whole new set of geometries that fits with the real world better than a flat surface.”

Termes starts with plastic spheres he buys from light fixture factories, or for the larger globes, direct from Union Oil Company. He then sandpapers, gessoes, and paints with acrylics.

In addition to his artwork, Termes holds workshops to share his methods and enthusiasms with a far-ranging group of students, including Lakota Sioux children in South Dakota, mathematicians, Jungian society members interested in dream worlds, and art lovers worldwide.

His passion for art, science, and philosophy are evident, but as he says, “Total visual space, of course, has been my main interest.”

The sphere seems to reflect the balance and harmony in Termes’ life. He and his wife live in four domes with his ongoing creations of global beauty.

“I am happy with my life. I think I have a good balance, maybe because I work with the sphere and the sphere is so perfect: it relates to the globe — Earth — with its geometries and design problems.”

Termes’ Worlds:

Termespheres in Motion:

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