Time is a funny thing, we like to ignore it, lose it, pretend it doesn’t exist so as to continue with our daily lives. But Ryan De La Hoz confronts time as to understand how our pasts affect our very immediate future. Imagery of destruction and fragmentation is seen in his minimal, hand-cut paper works to show how things can change in one instance, even in just in the material world. Showcasing a milieu of contemporary minimal abstract forms, Ryan’s work borders on psychedelic and sometimes hallucinatory. Static patterns and sharp textures layered with graphics — from energetic slime to vivid palm trees — create a sensational effect akin to staring at the sun. It’s hard not to stare; his color palette toddles between harsh contrasts of black and white to more calming, cooler hues. Some could describe his work as digital but you’d be surprised to learn that most of it (if not all of it) is created using analog processes.
For his new show opening at Breeze Block Gallery on December in Portland, de la Hoz appropriates a large amount of classical Greek imagery (mostly busts and sculpture) and distorts them in such a way that one would be certain Photoshop was employed. His methods are more analog however, he shifts the image using only his hands and a scanner, moving it back and forth until he obtains a desired effect. To complete his contorted and misshapen subject, he adds rainbow-colored sprinkles.
De la Hoz experiments new ways of making art all the time, dabbling in puzzle making, textiles, laser cut plastics and printed rubber, and of course always returning to his first love, paper. His newer work deals with destruction but it is not, by any means, angry. Themes of magic, myth, isolation, the life-long pursuit of happiness and, of course, the past affecting future all come into play. Verging on Op Art, Ryan’s work bends the mind while remaining steadfastly minimal, all while resting on a convergent point between two times. Ryan De La Hoz’s new show opens at Breeze Block in Portland December 5 alongside abstract painter Russel Leng. Be sure to check it out.