Ry Rocklen, ‘Tired Vessel’, 2017, PRAZ-DELAVALLADE

About Ry Rocklen

Known for wryly imbuing the mundane with theatricality, absurdity, and grace, Ry Rocklen turns culturally resonant found objects into Marcel Duchamp-inspired readymade sculptures. Examples include a sleep-themed 2010 mixed-media installation aptly titled “ZZZ’s” and a floor made from painted-over thrift store paintings speckled with sculptures such as a tree composed of copper pipes, concrete, a hay bale, and VHS tape (Believe You Me, 2011). Due to its narrative quality and use of visual puns, Rocklen’s work has been described as nonverbal comedic performances. The Harborer (2005), for instance, evokes the misadventures of a sea captain through a pair of yellow wellington boots, filled with cast-resin “ice” and “worn” by a pair of fishing net-entangled crutches—by extrapolating objects from their familiar contexts, Rocklen renders them poetic.

American, b. 1978