Dundalli Commemorative, watercolour on arches paper, 2010
Ryan Presley was born in Alice Springs, Australia in 1987. He currently works and lives in Brisbane. His father’s family originates from the Moyle River region (Peppimenarti/Port Keats) of the Northern Territory, while his mother’s family were Scandinavian immigrants to Australia.
Presley utilises a variety of media and techniques. Among them include illustration, watercolour, linocut, etching and ceramics. His practice involves a questioning and negating of historical and contemporary contexts. Presley utilises his own mixed heritage experiences and insights to contribute other understandings to the social and cultural nature of past and present colonial Australia. Delving into the Australian milieu, scrutinising how it has been constructed fuelled and maintained over its short path.
By venturing into the product, politic and influence of the public psyche, Presley seeks to quench personal curiosity, and in time, hopes to gain a level of catharsis regarding conflicting heritages and their endorsed world views.
The characteristics of his artistic practise are shaped by a desire to understand things genuinely and respond accordingly, with dialogues that will not only benefit him personally, but ideally, be of use to others as we navigate the difficult present coughed up by our traumatic and divisive history.