Ryan Gander's diverse practice includes sculpture, photography, print, design, film and installation, resulting in a unique portfolio of work best characterised by a love of storytelling through an ever-changing variety of materials and forms. Born in Chester in the northwest of England in 1976, Gander attended Manchester Metropolitan University where he studied interactive art: an art form that relies on the participation of its viewers. Upon graduating in 1999 with a first-class honours degree, he started work in a carpet shop in Chester until he travelled to Maastricht in the Netherlands to spend a year as a Post-Graduate Fine Art Research Participant at the Jan van Eyck Academie. He went on to take part in the artist residency programme of the Rijksakademie van beeldende kunsten in Amsterdam until 2004.
Drawing from his training as an interactive artist, Gander has frequently delivered his work as a tour of public lectures, such as the ongoing Loose Associations, which uses anecdotes to bring together otherwise disparate subjects. Gander also works with a team of technical specialists to produce more tangible works, his practice characterised by its exploration of wide spectrum of materials and techniques. In 2015, he told Ocula Magazine, 'Exhibitions that I make work off a sort of bouncing effect, moving from one medium to another, one tense to another. Mixing all devices and mechanics to make you unsure of where you are.'
Gander is a wheelchair user whose works sometimes speak to his experiences living with a long-term physical disability. A 2006 installation, Is this guilt in you too? (Cinema Verso), recreates a trip to the cinema that goes horribly wrong by trailing the confused visitor in circles as they search for a way to the screening. To create the disorienting effects, Gander filled a poorly lit gallery space at the old Whitechapel Library with illusions, obstacles and dead ends that trap the visitors. The work sheds light on some of the daily struggles for disabled people navigating our world and formed part of the Art Council's 'Adjustments' series that aimed 'to address transitional thinking on disability, equality and inclusion'. For his entry to the Venice Biennale in 2011, Gander produced The Artwork Nobody Knows, a miniature resin model of himself falling from a wheelchair as 'a self-portrait in the worst possible position'.
Gander teaches at several institutions including Goldsmiths, the Royal Academy of Arts and University of Huddersfield. As well as the Biennale of Sydney (2018) and the Venice Biennale (2011), Gander's work has been exhibited at the Shanghai Biennale (2012), dOCUMENTA (13) (2012) and Carnegie International (2008). Gander has had several solo exhibitions including The National Museum of Art, Osaka (2017); GALLERY HYUNDAI, Seoul, (2017); TARO NASU, Tokyo (2016); Singapore Tyler Print Institute (2015); Palais de Tokyo, Paris (2012); Solomon R Guggenheim Museum, New York (2010); The Stedelijk Museum Bureau, Amsterdam (2003); Museum moderner Kunst Stiftung Ludwig Wien, Vienna (2007) and CCA Wattis Institute for Contemporary Arts, San Francisco (2007). In the 2017 New Year Honours, Gander was appointed Office of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) for his services to contemporary art.
Constantly redefining his own practice and avoiding stylistic signature, Ryan Gander is a master of storytelling. Driven by investigation and questioning, he has worked across sculpture, film, writing, graphic design, installation and performance—his enigmatic environments resist clear interpretation, challenging the viewer and forcing us to...
STPI consistently delivers a challenging and exceptional exhibition programme. Resident artists – which in the past have included Ashley Bickerton, Eko Nugroho, and Do Ho Suh – are provided with an opportunity to use the Institute’s outstanding print and paper-making facilities to create works which are then presented in the...
It was a telling coincidence that the opening of the tenth Liverpool Biennial, curated by Kitty Scott (a curator at the Art Gallery of Ontario) and Sally Tallant (Director of the Liverpool Biennial), timed with Donald Trump's state visit to the UK.
Cockatoo Island, a short ferry ride from Sydney’s Circular Quay, is the least likely place one would expect to be simultaneously cast and filmed for a motion picture set predominantly in Berkeley, California. But A-frame signage dotted around the abandoned shipyard informs visitors of their every move potentially being documented.
This October, Store Studios will host Everything At Once, an extensive off-site exhibition featuring 24 artists currently shown at Lisson Gallery in celebration of its 50th anniversary.
British artist Ryan Gander is an ideas man. They are his métier and material, not just because he is a conceptual artist but also because he has an insatiable, childlike curiosity about everything. Arriving before Christmas at Gander's studio in a picturesque village in Suffolk, northeast of London, I was eager to peruse his legendary 'ideas wall,'...