Ry McCullough is an artist and educator, working in Tampa, Florida. He earned his Bachelors of Fine Arts from Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio where he concentrated in the areas of printmaking and sculpture. Upon completion of his undergraduate work he served as the Director of Sculptural Studies as well as teaching printmaking at Stivers School for the Arts. McCullough received his MFA in Printmaking and Book Arts from the Lamar Dodd School of Art at the University of Georgia. He currently is serving the Department of Art + Design as an Assistant Professor of Art at the University of Tampa. McCullough has exhibited nationally, internationally and is the founder of the Standard Action Press Collaborative Zine Project.
My current work is engaged with diverse approaches in creative practice. Fields of printmaking, creative writing, drawing, sound, and sculpture open a map for crafted discovery and surprise encounters. Traditional and experimental processes allow me to investigate how art can express states of being and the ethics that encircle abstraction. The ambiguity and mystery of abstract languages generate a tension between the known and unknown, as well as fabricated and found. How cultures value information and knowledge is in a state of constant transformation, as spoken and unspoken boundaries are formed and collapse through time. I am interested in that timeless space; of how knowledge and truth is sought after and how fixed positions are ultimately unattainable within the scope of lived experiences. In a practical sense, I am making art objects and must reconcile the deficiency and surplus of meaning that is laid bare in every choice I make within the studio. Each grouping of tools and materials that I use form unique systems that speak to limitation, restriction, and form the border of how we imbue images and objects with meaning. Themes are approached obliquely with ambivalence as method of inquiry, allowing process to guide exploration. Print-based forms, sculptural objects, sound works and installation maintain an historical baggage that is a primary condition wherein, I find comfort, compliment, contradiction and contrast. Each condition defines a schematic structure of inherent qualities and each presents opportunity for improvisation and rupture. These systems of making are aligned with a set of conventions that I can work with or against to produce experiences for a viewer that are suggestive, poetic, and deeply philosophical. My work speaks to a formal interest in color and shape, refinement and collapse, form and space; as interchangeable units in an arena of collage and bricolage.