"When you give an object a new function, it becomes alive."
For the past 25 years, Cordy Ryman’s work has been rooted in manipulating materials across a wide range of scale, including wall, floor, and corner works and installations. Painting primarily on wood allows him the versatility to expand the work’s viability. He notes, “A lot of my work is about reactions—reactions to elements within materials, between different combined elements within a work, and between the materials and the space around it.” The result provides a consistency in form and practice that lends itself to evolving motifs that are only recognizable overtime. The process and method that he has developed can be viewed as a constellation of constant and careful reiteration, like connected branches on a tree.
Engaging in an astute dialogue with minimalist and constructivist ideologies, Ryman's work oftentimes operates both architecturally and organically. By employing elements of site-specificity, shadow, raw materiality and dimension, he masterfully creates "specific objects" that utilize environment as an extension of surface. Paint, wood, Velcro swatches, staples, metal and debris playfully conjoin as self-referential qualities that allude to process and materiality, while a deliberate use of tonal planes and gradation bespeak a progressive variation of color-field aesthetics.
Ryman received his BFA with honors from the School of Visual Arts (NY). In addition to solo shows in Chicago, New York, Los Angeles, Seattle, Munich, Brussels and Gilleleje, he has been featured in exhibitions at the Nerman Museum of Contemporary Art (KS), P.S. 1 Contemporary Art Center (NY), and Museum of Contemporary Art (FL). His work has been acquired for the public collections of Microsoft (WA), Museum of Contemporary Art (FL), Raussmuller Collection (Basel), RD Merrill (WA), Rubell Family Collection (FL), Speyer Family Collection (NY), and the Virginia and Bagley Wright Collection (WA).