b. Limerick, Ireland; lives and works in London

1987-88 Birmingham University, MA 

Anne Ryan creates highly coloured, constructed paintings that focus on figures engaged in a variety of activities. Her subjects dance, party, pose and generally indulge themselves in scenarios that draw on diverse sources from visual culture and the world around her.

Ryan’s paintings are made on card but leap out into the third dimension, propelled by the intoxication of a Dionysian feast. These women are related to the Maenads, women followers of Dionysus, whose ovation for the Greek god of wine, Euo, was the title of Ryan’s recent exhibition Earthly Delites at Hastings Contemporary.

“I love the freedom they give me. Suddenly you’re not tied to the four walls of a canvas”, the artist has said of her joyful subjects. Her Maenads, which translates to ‘women in the throes of frenzy’, are held in check by the Perspex case; nevertheless she sees them as “high on partying, women setting themselves free, letting go”.