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Handmade Frames // Ryan Frank


Featuring a new series of work that combines Frank’s signature combination of sculpture and photography, using unique and custom-made frames for displaying his images. The subject of the photographs used in the exhibition will be landscapes, some taken during Frank’s travels around the globe and others shot in his own backyard.

I moved upstate and bought a car.  After taking the same drive in my weekly commute I started to look forward to specific points in my journey, where I would sigh and delight in the combination of natural and man made beauty at the most scenic spots along the road.  One day, while crossing the road in front of my house upstate, the symmetry of the yellow and white lines and absence of cars gave me the impulse to take photographs — one to the left and one to the right.  My camera lens functioned as a way to check both ways before crossing.  The photos accurately captured the scene that had been in front of me so many times before through my windshield, and I now had it documented so it could be displayed on my computer monitor.  But seeing it on a flat screen or even in printed form just didn’t do the image justice.  I needed to make a container in order to view it properly.

Over the last two years I’ve constructed a series of plywood boxes designed to display my photographs.  The boxes are various shapes and sizes and each one is paired with a specific set of images.  While no two of my boxes are identical, they all have a few key similarities: a light bulb in the center, four sided with two open ends, each side displaying a back-lit photo transparency.  The boxes hang on the wall, facing out, but their true subject matter exists on the sides.  Viewers are encouraged to peer in, hunch down, bend over, or stand tall in order to see them thoroughly.  The images capture a specific time and place, and the effort to view them is similar to that which I endured to take them.   

For Handmade Frames I will cover the two sets of windows in the gallery with photo transparencies, transforming them into natural light boxes back-lit by the sun during daylight hours.  Though architectural in scale, the installation will function in the same manner as my plywood boxes: the images are related, placed at opposite ends of the structure, and are lit by the same light source.  Both the boxes and the window installation seek to find order within the chaos of the natural world, and symbolize that we are all captured, contained, or protected in one structure or another. Ryan Frank

Ryan Frank is an artist and curator based in Brooklyn, NY and Sharon, CT.  He’s exhibited his work at venues including Recession Art, the Invisible Dog, the Re Institute, 112 Greene Street, and the DUMBO Art Under the Bridge Festival.  From 2010-11 he was an artist-in-residence at the Wassaic Project and since 2012 he’s overseen art installation for the organization.  Recent curatorial projects include Ode Hotel at the Wassaic Project, Used Books at the Winkleman Gallery Curatorial Research Lab, and Reflective Landscape at the Granary, a private exhibition space in Litchfield County, CT.  Ryan studied performance and art history at New York University, where he received dual degrees in theatre and fine art in 2004. 

The exhibition is made possible, in part, by our Kickstarter donors
and with special support from Bruno and Emmanuele Vinciguerra

This exhibition is part of Armory Arts Week

March 9–April 13

Opening Reception
Saturday, March 9

The Main Gallery
51 Bergen St.