Jurassic Park's Lex is All Grown Up & Gorgeous: How She Looks Now at 43

Jurassic Park's Lex is All Grown Up & Gorgeous: How She Looks Now at 43
Image credit: Legion-Media

It's 30 years since Jurassic Park was released in cinemas.

And if you're wondering whatever happened to the actress who played Lex – the elder sibling and early cinematic force for strong female characters – you might be surprised to find that her subsequent career has been focused more on her artwork than her acting.

Now 43, Ariana Richards, who is married with one child, is a descendant of Italian Renaissance artist Carlo Crivelli, a contemporary of Botticelli. And this has helped bring out her creative side in a different way from acting.

She was 8 years old when she auditioned for the part in Jurassic Park and landed the role after auditionees were asked to scream and she was the only one to wake Steven Spielberg 's wife

Fortunately, Spielberg decided to switch the ages of the brother and sister for the film version of the story, making Lex the oldest and transferring some of her brother's personality traits from the book to her.

This pleased Richards who didn't actually like the book version of Lex.

Jurassic Park wasn't the first movie role the young actor landed. She had already starred in five movies before taking on the role of Lex, including Tremors, Spaced Invaders, and Timescape.

Jurassic Park's Lex is All Grown Up & Gorgeous: How She Looks Now at 43 - image 1

Post-Jurassic Park, she had a few more acting jobs (including a cameo as Lex in The Lost World: Jurassic Park) before graduating from Skidmore College with a Bachelor's Degree in fine art and drama – for which she achieved a distinction.

But her real passion was art. A fan of traditional painting styles from a young age, Richards has nonetheless been mentored by some of the best contemporary artists of the day.

Her art is heavily influenced by more traditional styles, but there is clear evidence in her paintings that they are modern art.

An award-winning artist, her work displays elements of those painters she most respects such as John Singer Sargent and Mary Cassatt. But Richards' work conveys a lightness and hope that is not always reflected in the works of those artists.

Richards also released an album (in Japan only) during the 1990s. And she returned to the screen in 2013, playing Donna Vuurhees in Battledogs.

She also appeared in the direct-to-video film Tremors 3: Back to Perfection in 2001, reprising the role of Mindy Sterngood who she had first played in 1990.

So, the reason you haven't seen much of her since she appeared in Jurassic Park may simply be that you're not an art buff.