Artist Statement: Ricky Day
I am an artist drawn to the ordinary and the vernacular. I am specifically drawn into an examination of how the disregarded and discarded can provide context and insight into the humorously paradoxical world we inhabit. Numbers, language, found objects, people, places and other things we take for granted often assume poetic qualities when exposed to the opposing extremes of media saturation and relative anonymity. I am interested in exploring the nature of celebrity and pop culture and their ubiquitous effects on modern society while juxtaposing each with the quotidian and vernacular. I also have a passionate interest in the parallel universe of sub-culture and it’s inhabitants.
I believe that we are much more alike than we are different and that we are united in our collective fear of change. I believe that this extreme fear of change drives many of our least attractive impulses. Art for me is an honest expression of the divinity within each of us and allows me the freedom to explore my relationship with change. My intention is to engage the viewer in a way that encourages one to contemplate how we see the world and to challenge our notions about historical events, art, pop culture, sub-culture, society and self. I believe that notions of self are developed in direct relationship to the images and information provided to us via the media, religion and our respective peer groups and families. I am interested in exploring and examining the power of art and imagery to create, inform and alter perceived reality while demonstrating the transformative power of change.
I often appropriate iconic imagery from canonical art movements and artists. I sometimes merge these histories with distinctly African-American cultural content and perspective. My intent is to expose the blindness of traditional art history and pop culture, while reflecting on the complexity and malleability of the African-American experience. The work is also an examination of the effects of the fear of change on art history, the African-American experience and society at large. I use photography, painting, collage, graphic-art, and other current technology to create my work. I feel that it is important to incorporate the tools of the time into my art practice because they too are characters in the story.