Leo Koenig Inc. is pleased to announce the opening of a solo exhibition of new paintings by Ridley Howard. Known for his enigmatic portraits, the artist continues his exploration of internal landscapes and external artifice.
Howard’s psychologically taut works reveal an artist that easily incorporates the vernacular of vastly different genres of painting, among them, high renaissance, pop art, and abstraction. Subtle and deceptively straightforward, the paintings invoke a sense of monumentality while still retaining a lingering intimacy.
In this most recent group of paintings, the artist depicts singular subjects in various settings. Elegant, and beautiful, the people inhabiting the landscapes reveal a complexity in their isolation. A filmic narrative emerges, coaxed by visual cues. The figures in soft focus invite speculation into their repose or watchfulness while strict delineation of the canvas, contracts or expands the frame. In this way Howard’s work brings to mind cinematic tropes Antonioni or Godard. Contrasting the singular figure with an almost monochromatic background compels the viewer into the frame to consider the subject even more closely, inviting a variety of interpretations.
Ridley Howard has exhibited extensively. His work has been included in shows at institutions such as the Knoxville Museum of Art, Knoxville TN, and The High Museum of Art, Atlanta, GA. He holds an MFA from Tufts University and has been the recipient of the Joan Mitchell Foundation Grant, and the Pollock-Krasner Foundation Grant. Ridley Howard lives and works in New York City.