artist statement

Ian Ryan’s painting practice is concerned with exploring the nature of the human condition as experienced via the self and the other. His paintings aim to stage a face-to-face encounter between the viewer and the image.  

The intentions behind these works are at times clear and at others obscure. Raw personal content is often conveyed through the use of humorous or absurd imagery and is at times hinted at by the use of titles which assist the viewer’s reading of the work. 

Finished paintings frequently swing between the extremes of figurative representation and abstraction. Whilst acknowledging the futility/difficulty of this endeavour, his overall intention is to explore the space between these two poles.  The relationship between the painting medium, support and image are of great interest to Ian. He combines this concern with his knowledge of paintings’ histories to produce works that employ a variety of visual languages.