Modern Eden Gallery proudly presents an exhibition surveying the career of a close personal friend and gallery artist Michael Ryan (1982–2016). Nearly 35 paintings and drawings have been graciously loaned from private collections and represent a major part of the artist's production between 2004 and 2016.
Michael Ryan was born in Brea, CA and graduated the Academy of Art University in San Francisco in 2005. After graduating he took a day job and met then co-workers and fellow artists Bradley Platz and Kim Larson. An immediate bond was formed between the three, and Bradley and Michael became very close friends, collaborating on several paintings, art projects, and exhibitions over the course of the next decade. When the Gray Area Gallery (now the Gray Area Foundation for the Arts) was founded in 2006, Platz and Ryan shared a studio in the back of the gallery and helped to curate and launch the inaugural exhibition. Their first duo exhibition opened at San Francisco’s Cowboys & Angels in 2007, followed quickly by a second duo exhibition at Eclectix gallery in El Cerrito in 2008. During this time Ryan was also working as a commercial illustrator, creating beautiful traditional oil paintings for Wizards of the Coast (Magic: the Gathering), White Wolf Studios, and Strange Horizons. Ryan was featured in Spectrum 14, and soon began exhibiting his allegorical oil paintings outside of San Francisco, with solo exhibitions at Mark Davis Gallery in West Virginia and in Los Angeles at the Hive Gallery in 2007. He was accepted into the Beinart International Surreal Art Collective and participated in two collective group shows in 2010 and 2011 curated by Jon Beinart at Copro Gallery in Santa Monica.
Ryan left San Francisco for Seattle, WA in 2008 earning a live/work residency at a new housing development for working artists. He was determined to start a new life in the natural beauty of the pacific northwest after living in San Francisco’s Tenderloin for nearly six years. Soon after his departure from San Francisco, Bradley Platz and Kim Larson founded Modern Eden Gallery and began representing his work professionally. Ryan participated in numerous group shows and two featured exhibitions at Modern Eden,Reliquaries, with Billy Davis in 2010, and his third duo exhibition with Platz,The Order, in 2011.
This retrospective exhibition brings together some of Michael's best and most memorable work from university days to his commercial works, and finally to his later works.
Allegory in the City of Cathedrals (Collection of Kim Larson and Bradley Platz courtesy of Jim Friend)
Nude Avoiding the Temples (Collection of Tracey McAllister)
Adoration in the Wastelands (Collection of Bradley Platz)
Assassins of the Ancient Progression (Collection of Gregg and Amanda Spatz)