Designer Ryan Decker Shows ‘Feudal Relief’ at Superhouse

Ryan Decker would like to speak with people who called the era between the 5th and 14th centuries the “Dark Ages” — a phrase coined by Renaissance scholars to describe what they considered a time of little scientific or cultural value. “The work that was done at the time was so full of life,” Decker says. “A really complex and fair craft, like, creative and imaginative creatures and monsters and shapes.” The era is inspired by “Feudal Relief,” the designer’s first solo show, running through July 3 at the Superhouse, featuring a “comic dungeon” covered in vinyl wallpaper and printed in a brick pattern. It is furnished with a carved wood throne decorated with bronze fairies, a CNC milled structural mirror and aluminum lamps decorated with neon botanical patterns. Space looks like it was plucked from a video game, and that’s not far from the truth: Decker made everything in virtual reality.

Decker’s work is part of a new wave of designers embracing a computer-inspired aesthetic, including artists Audrey Large, Khaled Elmais, Harry Nureyev, and Orta Miklos. The design possibilities seem limitless because the work is not burdened with practical concerns such as gravity or the cost of materials. While their purposes are primarily for digital landscapes, Decker and other artists also want to bring these designs into our tangible reality. “All I do is just try to figure out the best way to get something out of the computer,” Decker says.

Photo: Shawn Davidson

For a ‘feudal relief’ the result is a fixation that appears to shift between two and three dimensions. The Throw and change the pocket The side table looks like it’s made of brick, like the one on a vinyl wallpaper backdrop, but its surfaces are smooth. Meanwhile, dope leftovers The floor lamp appears to have grown from the floor, and tendrils-like drawings emanate from the walls. More disturbing: file fetal cycle Mirror – framed with bones covered with embryos – inspired by models of dinosaur embryos in the Museum of Natural History and horror film director David Cronenberg.

Decker’s design education began in high school, when he learned 3D modeling for video games and animation, but “I knew how boring and terrible the industries were,” he says. As an undergraduate at Appalachian State University, “He found industrial design randomly, and I was like, Oh, they do 3D things, She followed it blindly.” Today, Decker has started drawing in virtual reality, using an old Oculus Rift gaming headset that allows him to design as if the object was in front of him. “It makes more sense for sculpting work,” he says. Others.” Then he works with manufacturers to turn digital graphics into physical objects, giving him a break from all the time he spends behind the computer, which is “pretty nonstop,” he says. Instead of sticking to a single material, he works on metal, wood, and 3D printers. Glass, silicone, and resin, following techniques that seem most fun.Some of those experiences have also seeped into his practice from his work over the past three years as a studio assistant to Misha Kahn, a designer known for an obsessive approach to crafts and materials. Decker says of his insatiability.Other artists have substance and process and they are like, that’s it. I’ve felt that with digital work, a lot of this show is just machine gun style What do I enjoy? I Have a Virtual Reality Sculpture – What If I Try It In Wood? Actually, this is boring. Let’s just print that in 3D. “

Bricks and bones with the fairy on top throne

A lantern for your cell in the middle of the city pendant light

fetal cycle standing mirror

Mud wizard gives a vision for the future art mirror

sinner Amplifiers

Pictures: Shawn Davidson

The show’s medieval theme grew out of a research he began last summer, beginning with the beauty ideas of the era. Reading Umberto Eco’s essay On Ugly, Decker was struck by how medieval monsters were not seen as ugly, as they are today, which Eco referred to as an example of how beauty is socially constructed. This led him to monasteries, where he was influenced by the creative images and intricate craftsmanship he saw in the museum’s collection of medieval textiles, manuscripts, and sculptures, all of which inspired the display. But he explains, “I’m not trying to recreate medieval works.” Instead, it seemed like a compelling reference to today’s inequality, especially when he read about the new concept of feudalism, a theory explaining how society is moving toward a feudal structure defined by absolute power and a no-property class that exists solely for service. the rich. So, his work is an experiment in visualizing our new frightening feudal future: “If we step back into the new feudalism, what would it be like to be in a really saturated mindset of the kind of video games where everything is consumed by the internet? I kept joking that the world in which I was building it was just our world in a few years.”

Besides tactile actions, Decker included a purely digital piece: a repetitive image of what looks like a video game in which the player navigates a dungeon. “I kept imagining a brotherhood man’s bedroom where all they had was a foldable chair and a huge TV sitting in their own cell, watching this over and over again,” he says. “I felt very sad.” All of the elements in the show appear in the video, which leads to another episode: Decker’s feeling that the show has taken on a life of its own: It indicates that you don’t make decisions for them anymore — they just do things themselves. It kind of felt like you were playing God in a very small world.”

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