Ryan Humphrey. Courtesy of DCKT Contemporary.
DCKT Contemporary presents new works by RYAN HUMPHREY in All or Nothing, his second solo exhibition at the gallery. The symbolism of fearlessness, triumphant rebirth and its process is evident throughout the exhibition. The works utilize low-brow materials commonplace during HUMPHREY’s youth in blue-collar rural Ohio combined with more traditional artistic media.
In three large mixed media works (Back in Black, Now She’s Black, and Burst into Light) HUMPHREY expropriates the original hood designs of late 1970s Pontiac Trans Am muscle cars. He creates mixed-media paintings incorporating the symbolism of the mythical phoenix resurrecting itself. In Burst into Light, the centralized figure of the fire-breathing bird is attached to a large panel that fuses a variety of disparate materials including: beer bottle caps, Nascar pop rivets, automobile sheet metal, custom pinstriping, printed fabric and airbrush work.
Designer Appliance continues HUMPHREY’s interest in the intimacy of domestic furnishings and consumer mentality. This work consists of a generic refrigerator customized by the artist and adorned with everything from band stickers to a bottle opener made from an exotic dancer’s acrylic high heel. Filled with beer, condiments and Jägermeister, the appliance blasts classic rock and signifies a D.I.Y “live fast, die young” American mentality.
HUMPHREY completed the Independent Study Program of the Whitney Museum of American Art in 2006. He received his MFA from Hunter College in New York and his BFA from Ohio University. HUMPHREY had a solo exhibition at the Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art (Kansas City, MO) in 2006. Recently, his work was included in the traveling group exhibition Will Boys be Boys?: Questioning Adolescent Masculinity in Contemporary Art, curated by Shamim M. Momin. HUMPHREY also appeared on season one of Top Design on Bravo