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Bradley Castellanos' debut solo exhibition with Ryan Lee Gallery opens in New York
Bradley Castellanos, "Royak Oak," 2013, oil, acrylic and photo collage on panel. Courtesy of the artist and Ryan Lee.

NEW YORK, NY.- Ryan Lee announces “Crossing the Wilds,” Bradley Castellanos’ debut solo exhibition with the gallery. The exhibition features 14 new works that employ Castellanos’ signature technique of combining photography, paint and resin. This body of work focuses on landscapes, referencing discovery and the sublime, a place for both physical escape and psychological reflection.

Castellanos carefully scouts and photographs his locations, often choosing places with which he has a personal connection, such as the American Northeast. After staging a scene, he photographs it with a large-format or digital camera. He uses an X-Acto knife to cut away lace-like portions of the photograph, which is printed to the size of the panel. Here, the act of cutting takes on the quality of a drawn line. He layers in paint and resin to produce a hyper-realistic and dynamically textured surface. Drawing on the tradition of cinematic photography, Castellanos departs from conventional landscape painting and achieves a highly imagined world.

Inspired by the Hudson River School and German Romanticism, Castellanos taps into notions of American mysticism and explores relationships among dualities: nature and civilization, interior and exterior, reality and fantasy, absence and physicality. The use of a saturated color palette allows his work to operate outside representational constraints and expand on ideas of traditional art practices and disciplines. In Sugar Swamp, the human figure suggests an enigmatic physicality by evoking an inextricable correlation between humans and their environments, giving scale to the grandeur of the surrounding nature.

Castellanos received his BA from Skidmore College, NY in 1998 and his MFA from the School of Visual Arts, NY in 2006. Originally from Ponce Inlet, FL, Castellanos currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY. He has shown in notable museum exhibitions, including Indianapolis Museum of Art, IN; Tang Museum, Saratoga Springs, NY; Neuberger Museum of Art, Purchase, NY; Brooklyn Academy of Music, NY; McDonough Museum of Art, Youngstown, OH; and MoMA PS1, New York, NY.

On view in Gallery 2 is Stephanie Syjuco’s “RAIDERS.” Printed to actual size and mounted on laser-cut wood, these works, which depict vases and bowls, are culled from the public online database of the Asian Art Museum of San Francisco. Investigating the idea of cultural appropriation and the internet’s roll in its dissemination, Syjuco re-contextualizes these objects through the lens of cultural capital. Syjuco currently lives and works in San Francisco, CA. Her works have been widely exhibited, including at Columbus Museum of Art, OH; Contemporary Museum of Art Houston, TX; Off-Space, Karlsruhe, Germany; and San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, CA. She has also completed major commissions for Frieze New York and SFMOMA.

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