Keep checking his website. Maybe he’ll come out with a “pay what you want, no really” for paintings! We’ve got him scheduled to come out to MU for a lecture Thursday. The kids are excited–hell, I am too. I’ll report back any interesting tidbits.
Update: Ricky Allman gave a nice talk about his work at the University of Missouri yesterday. He was a soft-spoken and easygoing guy.
He was pretty open about his borrowings from other artists, architects and designers, actually saying that he felt it was important to do so. His logic is, essentially, “no artist is an island” and that being connected is vital. The specific references for his paintings are all things that he seemed truly passionate about; one gets no sense that there is something opportunist about it. It feels very innocent.
No mention of “Kid A”, though he did cite a line from a Low song, “The weight of the Water” as an inspiration for the works thematically.
As I looked at Ricky Allman’s work in large format on a projector (can’t imagine what they’d be like in real life), I couldn’t help but feel as though I had stepped into another dimension. At times I felt like I could see the other waves of the light spectrum, but at all times in his work there was a complexity which was really appealing. After all, with the apocalypse serving as an underlying theme in most of the work, one would not expect soft and subdued tones, very ordered lines, or a straight and forthcoming explanation of the symbolism of the images. So that is exactly what I liked about it; its chaotic as hell and you can find something new every time you view a certain painting of Ricky’s in particular, but there is also some connectivity between them all, if only that an object or theme is often so random that the artist himself doesn’t really know how it got there. In particular, I liked the mine shafts/vents in some of the paintings which served as connectors between the landscape and implied human presence. Will those shafts that we used to extract the Earth’s resources spit us back out among the garbage when the apocalypse is near?