Mosley Ryan

15 Apr - 15 May 2009

© Mosley Ryan
'Village Ambassador', 2008
oil on canvas
"A Gathering"

15th April - 15th May 2009
Opening: April, 15., 06-08p.m.

REGINA Gallery is pleased to present A GATHERING, the first solo show in Russia of Ryan Mosley, a young British artist.

With this exhibition REGINA continues to introduce young talented Russian and foreign artists to Moscow public.

Ryan Mosley was born in Chesterfield in 1980, his father is an engineer. Ryan attributes his enthusiasm for painting to watching his father doing drawings of LP covers at the weekends. By the age of 13 or 14 he knew he wanted to be an artist.

Unlike many young artists, content to manipulate technology, Mosley is a hands-on painter from first to last. Trained at Chesterfield College of Art and Design, Huddersfield University, Ryan Mosley finished his post-graduate studies at London’s Royal College of Art in 2007. His paintings, usually oils on linen which helps to give depth and density to the work are quirky narratives, ever-restless examples of story-telling of a kind that relates back to various recognizable traditions, from Brueghel and the Flemings, to Dutch still-life and genre paintings of the 17th century.

The 15 new paintings that make up the exhibition, while varied in terms of size and subject matter, can be seen as a single, coherent body of work. They operate as a visual ensemble, leading the viewer from the safety and comfort of the gallery into a strange world of carnivalesque characters. The painted faces, costumes and masks challenge us to make sense of what it is we are looking at. Our imaginations are put to work to sort through the rich lexicon of colours, signs and symbols, to make associations and find common sense.

The exhibition’s title A GATHERING is seemingly easy to interpret but in fact has a good deal more in it. Who are these people in a gathering, whose faces can be hardly discerned beneath the washed surfaces of paint applied and erased repeatedly? Looking more closely at the works the viewer gets even more puzzled – characters emerging from the canvases appear to be a reverend and a hobo, some Dickensian figure, a saint and a well-mannered aunt Sally, a nobleman and a gambler’s relative. Unpredictability as a principal argument shocks and delights. All of a sudden one gets an idea that this is not just a group of people in one place but a gathering of character types, which represents a notion of society in its diversity – be it a hobo or a nobleman – everyone has the right to exist, despite race, class ranking and welfare. A variety of “masks”, atmosphere of carnival and grotesque create an impression as if the canvas under attack were a theatre set in the making. There is humour, grotesquery and a perpetual ambiguity of mood. The stories the artist seems to be telling are open-ended, but what becomes really evident is a good sense of humour and the inherent good and positive which invites everyone to become A GATHERING member.

Tags: Ryan Mosley