Born in pre-Brexitannia, Luton, England, of both English and Irish heritage, ‘actively over-under achieving in procrastination‘ and fighting off ‘delusions of grandeur’ since 1975, Adrian Reynolds ‘Ren’ is a contemporary Artist/Designer based in Dublin, Ireland.
I draw and paint from observation, but not always directly. That is, both nature and artifice, both life and art: anything could compel me to draw. Ranging from five-centimetre drawings in ballpoint pen to paintings over five feet wide, my work takes its eventual form through a volatile process of observation and radical revision.
My images are the artifacts of my attempts to communicate, and describe what I see. Exploring the relationship between the tyranny of ageing and daytime TV, with influences as diverse as the Bauhaus movement and Ed “Big Daddy” Roth, new tensions are distilled from both orderly and random narratives. They comprise the act of looking made permanent.
Adrian Reynolds is a Dublin based abstract artist. His paintings are a response to the world that surrounds us. A world that is changing faster than ever before. His work is an exploration of colour, form and texture, placing his work at the intersection between abstraction and representation. His work has been featured in Ireland, the UK and the US.
Artist Biography: About Ren
About – Art Background
From an early age Adrian has always been interested in the aesthetics and assembly of objects. Commencing with childhood doodling at Primary School, Art and Design at High School and an intensive Art Foundation Degree at College.
This provided him with a visual vocabulary in the materials, techniques, language, concepts and processes of making, using and thinking about art. All of which illustrates Adrian’s experience and dexterity in a vast range of traditional fine art skills.
For Adrian, painting and drawing is always a journey. He uses the canvas as his ‘brush and paper’ and strives to create something of worth and value through skill and knowledge. His approach to making art is based on the vital tenets of respect for materials, traditional craft skills, personal expression and self development.
What drives Adrian is an insatiable desire to be the best artist he can be, with a constant desire to learn and develop. This gives him the freedom to express himself in a way that was beyond his words. He finds it liberating and inspirational to be able to communicate with marks on a canvas through painting.
About - Design Background
Adrian graduated from Wolverhampton University in 1996, completing a BA Hons in Three-Dimensional Design – Ceramics. This course introduced him to both Studio and Industrial Ceramic techniques ranging from: throwing, printing, mould making, slip casting, hand building, chemistry based glaze research and firing techniques. This was also accompanied by contextual studies of 20th Century Design.
Adrian has had his ceramic work exhibited at the prestigious Victoria & Albert Museum, London, under the pseudonym of ‘G.Laze’ aka Glaze.
About - Influences
Adrian cites a non-exhaustive influences from the likes of the Bauhaus movement, Salvador Dalí, Raymond Loewy, Tony Hart, John Hegley, Don Van Vilet, Ed Roth, Spike Milligan, and Grayson Perry.
If you would like to learn more about some of my above-mentioned influences, you may do so in this article.
About - Career
Subsequently, a period of uncertainty ensued, a lack of life experience and cash to enable further study at the Royal College of Art London, led to a misspent ‘premature mid-life crisis’ of ‘Art’ teacher training at Reading University. ‘1% of would-be teachers fail their training’; he didn’t fail, just gained a valuable experience of avoiding stress and illness, and has utmost respect for the vocational dedication required.
After making it to 1% of the 1%, a new opportunity arose, and he commenced work in Artwork/Repro/Graphic Design roles for major multinational consumer goods companies, gaining expertise in most aspects of computer-based design. Adrian is familiar with creating Logos, Stationary and Packaging, preparing Artwork for Print, and Photo retouching and manipulation, skills which are retained.
Adrian classes himself as a European; leaning naïvely towards Internationalism, and has lived and worked in multiple locations. This includes the Museum of History and Industry (MOHAI) in Seattle, WA, and he considers travel to be the best form of education and learning.
About - Technique
He is currently exploring the techniques of acrylic poured paintings. This technique is characterised by the lack of control in the process and the challenge this poses.
In the modern world we strive to control everything and always try to maintain a grip on the situation. We are always fighting for control. If we have fear, anger or a desire, then we want to have control over it, to be able to maintain the situation. We live in constant fear of losing control; we try to maintain control at all times. We have learned to live with the idea that we must control our environment, that we must manage things in order to be happy and successful.
We have been taught that without an objective plan, success is not possible. If we view this situation from a Buddhist perspective, then we see that nothing is really under our control. We are used to having control, but in reality we have very little control over anything. All of our emotions, all of our feelings, everything is fleeting. Sometimes this notion is difficult for us to accept. Some people do not like hearing that things are not under their control.
Acrylic Fluid Painting allows you to let go of the wheel, and embrace the elements of luck, chance, trial and error, culminating in an output of sheer randomness. Even though this might be difficult and unfamiliar, it can enable you to create something amazing, unexpected and unique. Adrian’s amazing abstract paintings emerge from this approach.
Although the medium is different, the technique is reminiscence of the Ceramic process and beautifully executed Crystalline glazes. This is a speciality glaze used by Ceramists, combining Zinc Oxide and Silica, which creates a visible and distinct crystal growth in the matrix of the fired glaze.
Through the use of a dynamic combination of materials, methods, concepts, and subjects that continue challenging boundaries, Adrian aims to maintain a fresh and irreverent approach to his work.
About - Exhibitions
- Between You and Me, August 2020 – June 2021, Contemporary Irish Arts Centre Los Angeles (CIACLA)
- Art in Clay, 1996, Hatfield House, UK.
- NACHE Ceramic Contemporaries 2 – 1996, Victoria & Albert Museum, London.
About - Charitable Work
About - Article / Feature
About - Current Life
Being creative is a big part of his life. His works have been commissioned by a number of individuals. Adrian finds it immensely satisfying to help clients see their visual dreams manifest and become reality.
Adrian is a member of the Visual Artists Ireland (VAI) which is the Representative body for professional visual artists in Ireland. He is also a member of the DecoArt Maker program which is focused on makers in the DIY, craft, entertaining, or art spaces who are focused on fostering online communities on social media.
Naturally, life has many twists and turns and in complete contrast to his current ‘institutional tenure, typically surviving transitions of political leadership’, he now embarks on reigniting his creative output and setting an ‘Art’ example to his daughter. He lives in Dublin, Ireland with Dee and Piya the Greyhound.