Ryan Peter French Cheshire, United Kingdom
The core theme of all my work is an interrogative exploration of our current mode of society, our attitudes and paradigms. My work is a social commentary; I am interested in using the notions of hyperreality and psychogeography to convey my feelings on social class, technology, the media, self-image and queer theory. I work primarily in painting, digital media, photography and illustration.
Using photography, I capture scenes from my day to day surroundings and collage them digitally. Enhancing the colours and making them fantastical, they are often saturated with information to the point of 'horror vacui', mirroring the society of excess that we are consumed by. It is a unique form of escapism that in its very essence warns us against itself; Boudrillard’s writings on ‘hyperreality’ and Guy Debord and the Situationist International are particular points of reference.
The themes I focus on in particular are identity in the information age, male body image, queer culture and theory, hyperreality, sociology, and philosophy.
In addition to my digital art, I am currently illustrating a queer horror graphic novel, 'Queer Tales,' created by myself and Adam Bennett Lea, with the intention to subvert popular culture and the horror genre with a queer perspective like never before.
The third aspect of my practice lies in painting. My current influences are the Italian Renaissance, Art Neauveaux, 1960s pop-culture, Dada and Surrealism. Each of these moments in art history were born from a time of social upheaval and advancement, the spirit of this is appropriate to the atmosphere of our current society. I intend to marry together my painting and digital art to advance my points of reference into new and exciting territory.