I’ve loved Rob Ryan’s intricate papercuts for a while now. Since being introduced to his work by the fantastic Domestic Sluts last year, I’ve made the pilgrimage to his Columbia Road shop, Ryantown, bought this skirt from clothkits, and been given a beautiful framed print for my birthday. Yes, I’m something of a fan.
So I was thrilled to be invited along to last night’s private view of his latest work at The Air Gallery on Dover Street. It turns out, I’m not the only one who likes his work – the slim gallery space was packed. (Hence my less than perfect pictures of the art, above.)
Despite the crowds and the heat, I had a great time, and loved the new pieces on show. Seeing so many of the large original papercuts (rather than the prints) up close was fantastic, and really showed just how much skill Rob puts into cutting such tiny shapes into each and every section of the paper.
And the gentle curling of various pieces of cut paper really gives life to the painstakingly cut flowers and leaves on the numerous trees and foliage in his work.
My one quibble was some of the pure, whimsical romance of earlier work I’ve seen seemed to be lacking last night. Maybe it was the crowds, or the amount of black paper on show, but there was more menace and melancholy to the work. Needless to say, I prefer the more positive, romantic, colourful ones.
If you like art with a difference, you should definitely go along and have a look. Particularly if seeing Rob’s work in Central London is easier for you than getting to his shop. Although I can’t promise you won’t end up perusing his website for a little piece of Ryantown for yourself after seeing the show.
The Stars Shine All Day Too by Rob Ryan is on at The Air Gallery until 20 November. Opening Times: Monday-Friday, 10am-6pm. Saturday, 11am-4pm. Sunday, 12-4pm. Free. For more info, see www.misterrob.co.uk or www.tagfinearts.com