Ryann is a local artist who specializes not in one single category – such as food, or portraiture – but in precision and composition
That’s the word that I use most often to describe the photography of Ryann Ford. Ryann is a local artist who specializes not in one single category – such as food, architecture, or portraiture – but in precision and composition. An image of hers is identifiable by beautiful arrangement, razor-sharp definition, and a remarkable clarity through perfect exposure.
I’ve admired her work for the past few years, but it wasn’t until very recently that I had the chance to hear Ryann speak – gaining insight into her process and her motivations.
The setting was Alley #111 – on 9th street between Brazos and Congress – where Art Alliance Austin had transformed a mundane alleyway into a physical work of art called “20ft WIDE.” Neon-colored nylon cords spanned from rooftop-to-rooftop. Several hundred white paper cranes – each carrying inside the written wish of local-area school children – created a canopy that hung appropriately between the earth and the stars. It was here, opening night, that Ryann – along with several other of our talented citizens – would speak on stage in front of a projector screen for a Pecha Kucha.
A Pecha Kucha is a simple presentation format from Tokyo. 20 images, each held for 20 seconds.
It’s effective storytelling.
This month’s Reel Artists takes you back to that night with a special video presentation of Ryann’s latest work – a documentation of rest stops around the country. Each structure is unique, and lends itself to a certain time period or culture, but they’re disappearing. Pretty soon these images may be all there is to remember them by.
Sit back. Unwind.
Vanishing Relics of the American Roadside
Photography: Ryann Ford