John Ryan thinks 31 pieces of art may not be enough for “January,” a one-night-only exhibition Friday, March 12th, at Haizlip Studio, and he’s thinking about making more. “Word of this show has gotten out, and while I wouldn’t exactly call it a frenzy, there might be some pre-sales,” says Ryan, who has priced each of the works at $250 but has indicated that he’s willing to trade art for “a decent fly rod.”
The small, nature-themed pieces in “January” represent something of a departure for a painter who typically works on larger canvases. “I think each piece has a little drama in it,” Ryan says. “It’s not just a bird on a branch.” Ryan started working on his smaller pieces in December, after buying several junk-store frames and creating works to fit them. Friends responded positively to the new approach, so he went to the junk store every day in January, bought a new frame, and created a new painting to fill it. “It would all probably look a lot better in nicer frames,” he jokes. “Some of these frames are the kind made to stand up on a piano, so people will be able to pick them up, look close, and move them around.”
And just what does Ryan consider to be a trade-worthy fly rod?
“Well, a good entry-level rod costs about $400,” he says, doubting that he’ll be bartering for art on Friday night. “But if a guy actually shows up with a rod, I guess I’ll have to do some business.” — Chris Davis