Thursday, January 13, 2011
jaime Raybin and Ryan Hogan at Twist Art Gallery February 2011
Jaime Raybin and Ryan Hogan at Twist Art Gallery space 73 February 2011
Ryan Hogan's artist statement
“I remember I wanted to get to non art, non connotive, non anthropomorphic, non geometric,
non nothing, everything, but of another kind, vision, sort. From a total other reference point. Is
it possible?” – Eva Hesse
The sentiments expressed by Eva Hesse are similar to my own, but not entirely. To some
degree, I would say that my work is anthropomorphic. Perhaps it is non-connotive, but, if it is,
would I be able to write this statement without being contradictory? Perhaps, then, it is
connotive but not in a concrete way. The part of Hesse’s statement that I feel merits the most
emphasis is that which reads, “everything, but of another kind, vision, sort. From a total other
reference point.” My work attempts to create that new reference point; to develop landscapes
that have not necessarily been seen before. An individual recently viewed a piece of mine in the
school’s gallery and expressed her affinity for realism in art. After responding to her it occurred
to me that, essentially, I am a realist. My work consists of real things, real objects, and real
materials. My objective is paradoxical: I create real yet altogether unfamiliar images. It is
important (if not imperative) when creating my art to create these new reference points. Peter
Eisenmann deems it necessary for art and architecture to be devoid of representation, simulation,
and its reference to history. When one invents an artwork’s sight, its history, and its
representation the work begins to dissimulate. The work is a text and, to echo the notions of
Eisenmann, I want my work to function in this way; I want my work to invent its own origins, to
have its own history. I want it to create new reference points and new landscapes.
In order to create its own history, the pieces must be devoid of representation. If
representation were involved, the work would naturally be making references to things outside of
itself. Thus, the resin is layered upon itself, each layer adding to its history. As the layers
develop, the work becomes very muted. Merely gazing at the surface gives the illusion that there
is little going on below. For that reason I invoke the use of light. The light reveals the work’s
history; it engenders and sustains life, it elucidates. When the pieces are illuminated they take on
a new life. They are imbued with vitality. This life, this imbued vitality gives the work its quasi-
anthropomorphic quality. I immerse my work in light and it, in turn, the flat surface reveals
depth; the light reveals nuances. Light completely transforms the appearance of the piece.
Though light elucidates the work, it doesn’t control it. The work still has the power to
obfuscate. Depths revealed by the light still exist behind an opaque wall and, consequently,
keeping secret the exact nature of what lies beneath the surface. Kurt Anderson states, “In art
and design and culture I think we actually crave a certain amount of complexity; some interesting
murkiness. Translucency.” The light reveals nuances but it does not completely expose the
depths. This uncertainty intrigues the viewer. The work functions properly when “its essence
remains half-hidden, slightly murky, which is central to its beauty and its appeal.”
The fact that the outcome of the work is not known until it is illuminated adds to its
history. To reference Hesse once more, her works became interesting when they went beyond
her expectations. Similarly, my works do not mirror my expectations exactly despite that fact
that it is what I seek. My work becomes interesting when illuminated and makes known whether
or not it matched my expectations.
Ryan Hogan is an artist-in-residence at Gallery F at the Scarritt-Bennett center
(Nashville, TN). He is a graduate of Freed-Hardeman University in Henderson,
TN. His work has been featured at the Renaissance Center (Dickson, TN),
Western Kentucky University (Bowling Green, KY), and Gallery F. His work
has been reviewed in the Nashville Scene and the underground art publication
The Rabbit (Nashville, TN).
My art is driven by material. I choose what physical substance best represents
the concept I am working with, and undergo a process of experimentation until
I push past the literal form. In this series I worked with bodily imagery in an
abstracted, removed way, manipulating scrapings under a microscope.
Different aspects of myself appear in the finished work: the researcher and
the subject. In my workings with the microscope, I developed an exaggerated
alternate persona where I am a “scientist” rather than an artist, doing field
research on my samples. I included this pseudo-objective voice directly within
the work as a sort of narrator.
In a series of PSA-style posters, I juxtapose visceral bodily imagery against
captions connected to bodily processes. One image shows a hairy jelly-like
mass alongside a caption reading “Permitted hunger: a resting place from
continual digestion”. The language of the text falls somewhere between diary
and textbook: a researcher inadvertently revealing too much about herself. The
posters are simultaneously confrontational and abstract, the viewer accidentally
overhearing both sides of a passing conversation between body and mind. The
body is treated as a quasi-mechanical organism, a habitat composed of working
processes and systems.
Jaime Raybin earned a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Watkins College of Art and Design in 2006.
Her exhibition history includes the Frist Center for the Visual Arts (Nashville, TN), Swanson-
Reed Contemporary (Louisville, KY), the Renaissance Center (Dickson, TN), Athens Institute
for Contemporary Art (Athens, GA), and the University of the South (Sewanee, TN). She lives in
Raybin is part of Off the Wall Art Group, a five-member art collective committed to making
conceptually driven work with personal resonance. Off the Wall began in 2004 as a group
of students creating their own exhibition opportunities. It has since become a fixture of the
local independent art movement, with invitations to show in galleries and speak in front of the
From 2007 to 2009 Raybin served as President of Plate Tone Printshop, a membership-based
fine art printmaking facility offering studio access, classes, and exhibition opportunities.
Raybin was on the Board of Directors of the Secret Show Series, a curatorial group dedicated to
displaying contemporary, often experimental art in nontraditional spaces. The Secret Show Series
operated an alternative art space, 310 Chestnut, in 2005.
Raybin's art is material driven, utilizing substances such as Pepto-Bismol, bubble gum, and
school glue to conjure personal associations. She publishes “The Scientific Method”, a lifestyle
fanzine for social climbing scientists.