DAVID RYAN – New Work
January 4 – February 15, 2003
The Mark Moore Gallery is pleased to announce the first solo exhibition by David Ryan. Ryan’s work reflects many of the characteristics of the "Las Vegas School of Neo-Pop Painting" - like Yek, Sush Machida Gaikatsu, Phil Argent, Tom Burke, Gajin Fujita, and Tim Bavington (among others). Ryan however, seamlessly marries the Minimalist aesthetic of an Ellsworth Kelly with the conceptual quirkiness of a Richard Tuttle. The result is objects that are as much about the nature of painting and drawing, as the process of making art, and the age we live in itself. The result is a group of paintings that are as elegant and inviting, as they are strange and foreign to us.
In the words of the artist, “I start with a quickly rendered sketch of a shape, whose outline I derive from a cumulative assessment of the lines created by the seams on the skin of machines. I examine whatever machines come into my visual environment whether they are electronic gadgets, household appliances, or any variety of transportation vehicles. Mostly, I look at the seams on cars, such as the line between a fender and the trunk or a headlight as it is integrated into the body. After establishing the sketch of the shape, I introduce the sketch of an interior or subsidiary shape that I “fit” into the larger shape. The outline of the interior shape is a reaction to the outline of the containing shape. The sketch serves as the model for the end product, which is usually produced in steel.”
“Produced in metal, the lines of the sketch become physical edges, and adjacent edges create seams. In the drawing, the background recedes while the metal version consists of interconnected parts that depend upon each other to maintain its surface. The seams are perceived as both seam and line. I use color to affirm the material presence of the parts and to prevent the object from being perceived only in terms of line or as illusory space. To this end, I introduce a straight-line color division that produces an optic edge that contradicts the haptic edges. The irregular paths of the seams, which are derived from quickly rendered sketches, distance the work from the production-line uniformity of machine-made products. I want to adapt the refinement and interchangeability of machine skins to the expressive finality of painting.”