Pip Ryan – Flesh Creepers

3 September to 3 October 2020

Flesh Creepers is a new series of works that started whilst on residency at Bundanon Trust in November 2019 and has continued throughout the pandemic. Both Bundanon and the lockdown are spaces that are isolated, one in the landscape and one in the domestic setting, lending themselves to a world where the things around you can morph and mutate.

This body of work draws heavily from an ongoing series of darkly comical beasts and playful surreal imagery. Banal objects are reconfigured and anthropomorphised, absurdly transforming the familiar into the uncanny as they slip further from their domestic space.

Lines, patterns, eyes, teeth, shades of pinks, reds, blues, greens and meaty fleshy forms are suspended within the space. Some of the works verge on the realm of the grotesque, metamorphosing body and object to make the flesh creep, the skin crawl. Others peer out, unimpressed at their reanimation. All the creatures in the space collectively watch their audience through the many eyes they embody.

Many characters in this exhibition are representative of a form from a childhood memory. From playing outside with the iconic garden hose as an infant, through to encounters with swarms of electric eels at the botanic gardens, all of the works are entrenched in a story or series of memories.

Drawing on a multitude of sources including myths, imaginary childhood creatures, personal memories, family history and other-worldly beasts, these works investigate the junction between the personal and the imagined world, a childhood landscape through an adult lens. A place to escape and get lost in, a place of Flesh Creepers.

This project has been generously supported by the Sidney Myer Fund & The Myer Foundation and the Australia Council for the Arts.

Pip Ryan is an artist based in Melbourne. Her practice explores humour, irony and the absurd through drawing, sculpture, installation, and video. She completed her Master of Fine Arts (research) at Victorian College of the Arts with the assistance of Australian Post Graduate Award, and has exhibited nationally and internationally in group and solo exhibitions. Ryan also collaborates with her sister Natalie Ryan exhibiting under The Ryan Sisters.