Portfolio by Alan Ruiz

What does form perform?

Discover MFA Programs in Art and Writing

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Alan Ruiz, Western Standards C2–120, 2016. Steel studs, wood, existing architecture. Variable dimensions.

What tools might allow us to explore not merely the aesthetic qualities that define an object’s form, but rather its disposition and the way it behaves within a field? 
—Alan Ruiz, from his essay “Radical Formalism,” 2016 

Alan Ruiz works on site-specific architectural interventions. Some of them employ dense, vertical rows of aluminum sheetrock studs to create what he calls screens. 

Ordinary studs are stripped of their function and purpose. They agglomerate into shimmering planes. Their new role is to play with light. The screens are elegant, anonymous, and ambiguously situated between art and architecture.

The studs are lined up very close together. They are not all positioned perpendicular to the plane of the screen. The different angles of alignment create different conditions of transparency and opacity. Light passes directly and indirectly. The aluminum surfaces reflect the light as well.

The screens both show and hide what is beyond; they are both permeable and impermeable. You can see the other side, but you can’t move through; the eye is engaged, while the body doesn’t come across.

What does Alan want? Anonymity? Radical formality?

Who took notice of his intervention and who did not? Was this a screen test? Is he screening us—separating out the wheat from the chaff, weighing imaginations?

What did you see there—an installation or a building renovation in progress?  Was it determined or given? Made or found? Configured through authorial subjectivity or practical exigency? 

The author is not invisible. The author is not against nature!

—Peter Halley

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Alan Ruiz, Hunter Green 1390, 2016. Plywood, plexiglas, existing architecture. 16 x 8 feet.

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Alan Ruiz, Against Nature, 2013. Steel studs, MDF, existing architecture. Variable dimensions.

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Alan Ruiz, Western Standards C2–120, 2016. Steel studs, wood, existing architecture. Variable dimensions.

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Alan Ruiz, Against Nature, 2013. Steel studs, MDF, existing architecture. Variable dimensions.

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Alan Ruiz, Organizational Transparency, 2016. LLUMAR RN-07G, existing architecture. Queens Museum.

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Alan Ruiz, Organizational Transparency, 2016. LLUMAR RN-07G, existing architecture. Queens Museum. 

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Alan Ruiz, Singular Plural, 2013. Aluminum, mirror, stripped drywall. 78 x 24 inches.

Tom Burr by Alan Ruiz
Burr Tom 01 Bomb 134
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Greenbaum Tyvek 1

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Cordy Ryman by Stephen Westfall
Gluebox Body

A typical Cordy Ryman lies in a hybridized zone between sculpture and painting; pieces of wood or perhaps canvas may be isolated like small geometric paintings or even extended into the full expanse of the rooms in which they are installed, following a kind of modular accumulation strategy. 

Jim Hodges by Stuart Horodner
Jim Hodges 01

In 1994 I saw an installation by Jim Hodges called A Diary of Flowers. It featured over 500 drawings of distinct flowers, each rendered in black or blue ball point ink on folded or opened up paper napkins.