Trained formally as a graphic designer, the paintings of Ryan McGinness merge controlled abstraction with subverted logos and symbology to create bold delineative paintings. He is heavily influenced by artists such as Keith Haring and Andy Warhol, as well as insights that began as a skate kid in Virginia Beach: “I was always interested in how the application of symbols on what are otherwise ordinary objects, like skateboards and T-shirts, really transformed the value of those things. When I couldn’t afford the cool brands, I would just make my own.” Early on in his career, McGinness wrote and released a book called flatnessisgod, which has become something of a bible for designers worldwide and was celebrated by Japanese pop artist Takashi Murakami. He has become known for his conceptual and tightly executed projects, including one titled InstagrAM that was presented via the social media platform - a dot matrix self portrait made of hundreds of button-sized black and white text slogans. McGinness continuously challenges the language of graphics and advertising through his paintings, installations and sculptures. His more recent works, #metadata, explore the impact of an assault of imagery, while Screen Combines encourages the viewer to navigate through a maze of paintings made on used silkscreens from prior work.
McGuinness's past solo exhibitions include Kohn Gallery, Virginia Museum of Contemporary Art, Deitch Projects, Pace Prints and the Cincinnati Art Museum. His work is found in numerous public and private institutions such as the Metropolitan Museum of Art, MOMA, UBS Collection, JP Morgan Chase, The New York Public Library, and The Schwab Family Collection.
American, b. Virginia Beach, Virginia, 1973; based in New York, New York
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