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Ryan Foster: Hither and Yon, Elsewhere and Otherwise
August 7 - November 25
Ryan Foster (b. 1984) is an American oil painter based in Birmingham, AL. He received an MFA from The University of South Florida in 2011. Working in oils, he uses landscapes, and the horizon lines they create, as a tabletop to stage various scenes similar to a still life painting while allowing room for both portraiture and abstraction thus blending all the traditional genres together. There is allowance for a wide range of subject matter which is intentionally cobbled together and executed in a very detailed manner.
The space above a horizon line typically opens into a vast expanse, i.e. the sky, however, it is my intention that the space becomes an other-worldly arena into another dimension. In this manner, the paintings seek to be open-ended enough to absorb almost any subject matter sincerely. Like a strange Instagram feed, the open expanse is treated as a different realm as it attempts to incorporate anything, both the real and imagined, the physical and the metaphysical. Akin to a stream of consciousness, the internet has provided a type of distraction that reflects our information age. And similar to the internet, the paintings are treated like the inside of a brain; tangible thoughts scattered about within an expansive field. Sometimes these thoughts are veiled by a curtain, pattern or textile. At other times there is a single large thought filling the sky. And still others show many thoughts happening at once.
The work is meant to be theatrical and momentous as it reflects on a non-cynical hope in the soul and an overwhelming amount of information within the brain.