Here, we ask an artist to frame the essential details behind one of their latest works.
Bio: Ryan Robichaux, 29, Los Angeles (@ryan.robichaux)
Title of work: Lean (Study).
Where to see it: “Growing Pains” at Schlomer Haus Gallery (2128 Market St, San Francisco) until Dec. 2.
Three words to describe it: Pensive, nuanced, layered, intimate.
What was on your mind at the time: Maybe explicitly, brotherhood, but in reality so many things, and it all comes back to intimacy, really—all the different types, platonic and non, direct and indirect, even the perception of it. We all have different barometers for what we define as an intimate moment. It’s fascinating that one person can experience a shared moment or touch so differently, and that perception is entirely subject to who we are and our background.
An interesting feature that’s not immediately noticeable: This was a warm-up for a painting done on “scrap” paper that was later mounted to something more substantial. It’s a good reminder to myself and almost an ironic magnum opus of my practice (and life) to not prematurely discredit the validity or success of anything. Just because you don’t think you’re ready or good enough yet doesn’t mean you should withhold yourself the space and chance to try.
How it reflects your practice as a whole: It’s a bit messy, a little rushed even. I was trying so quickly to get everything there, all the pieces in view, no corner more refined than another, just an explosion of the expression and touch I wanted to communicate. This piece revealed to me how and what I really wanted to talk about—to embrace the charm of the often clumsy pursuit of human connection.
One song that captures its essence: “Someday” by Sugar Ray.