September 5 through October 12, 2002
Fredericks Freiser Gallery is pleased to announce an exhibition of paintings by Ridley Howard. The artist recently graduated from the Museum School, Boston, MA and was included in Garden State at this gallery last fall. He has been awarded grants from the Joan Mitchell Foundation and the Pollock-Krasner Foundation. This will be his first one-person exhibition in New York.
Ridley Howard’s figurative paintings mingle emotional longing and personal experience with a particularly timely romantic vision. While this work certainly celebrates a wide range of influences from Watteau and Balthus to French New Wave and Alex Katz , such influence is secondary—seamlessly intertwined with the image and tone of these refined and idiosyncratic pictorial narratives. There is also a kinship to the artifice and “constructedness” of much of ‘90s figuration, but rather than point to the “fakeness” of the medium, Howard offers a fundamentally sincere attempt to experience the delicately constructed and considered spaces of these paintings.
Howard’s figures exist somewhere between dream and fact, hinged to their setting by finely described objects. There is a softness to the way they gently inhabit their spaces. They float through a world where the grandiosity of hope and desire is set against the awkwardness of a colder, more banal reality. Here, a fleeting detail such as a finely rendered motel key on a table, a half-finished drink on a bar, or a hand in a spray of water convey a sensuality that is decidedly poignant. In a way, they anchor these paintings to the transient nature of existence and provide an exploration into the complexity of yearning.
Fredericks Freiser Gallery is located at 504 West 22nd Street, between 10th and 11th Avenues. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 11am to 6pm. For further information and/or photographs please contact the gallery by telephone at (212) 633-6555, fax at (212) 367-9502, or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Visit us at the end of the month at our new Website fredericksfreisergallery.com.