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DANNY FERRELL: CASTLE IN THE SKY

520 West 21st Street

17 March - 23 April 2022

New York, NY: Miles McEnery Gallery, ‘Danny Ferrell: Castle in the Sky,’ 17 March - 23 April 2022

New York, NY: Miles McEnery Gallery, ‘Danny Ferrell: Castle in the Sky,’ 17 March - 23 April 2022

New York, NY: Miles McEnery Gallery, ‘Danny Ferrell: Castle in the Sky,’ 17 March - 23 April 2022

New York, NY: Miles McEnery Gallery, ‘Danny Ferrell: Castle in the Sky,’ 17 March - 23 April 2022

New York, NY: Miles McEnery Gallery, ‘Danny Ferrell: Castle in the Sky,’ 17 March - 23 April 2022

New York, NY: Miles McEnery Gallery, ‘Danny Ferrell: Castle in the Sky,’ 17 March - 23 April 2022

New York, NY: Miles McEnery Gallery, ‘Danny Ferrell: Castle in the Sky,’ 17 March - 23 April 2022

New York, NY: Miles McEnery Gallery, ‘Danny Ferrell: Castle in the Sky,’ 17 March - 23 April 2022

New York, NY: Miles McEnery Gallery, ‘Danny Ferrell: Castle in the Sky,’ 17 March - 23 April 2022

New York, NY: Miles McEnery Gallery, ‘Danny Ferrell: Castle in the Sky,’ 17 March - 23 April 2022

Press Release

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – MILES McENERY GALLERY is pleased to announce an exhibition of recent paintings by Danny Ferrell. The artist’s inaugural exhibition at the gallery, Castle in the Sky, will open on 17 March at 520 West 21st Street and remain on view through 23 April 2022. The exhibition is accompanied by a fully illustrated digital publication featuring an essay by Lauren O’Neill-Butler and conversation with Shona McAndrew.

Danny Ferrell’s portraits are visions of intimate daydreams representing the artist’s friends and peers. Colorful, gregarious, and with a deep appreciation for beauty, the artist is “humbled by the ineffable cosmic hand that imbues our world with magic.” This is manifested in the artist’s alluring muses, abundant in life and color. Color is the primary method that Ferrell visually communicates the sensitivity and strength of his subjects. The canvases, with their often warm, glowing backdrops, are saturated in color and bursting with life. Through lush shades of red, purple, and orange, he commemorates and elevates his sitters.

Ferrell’s color palette is culled from the sublime skyscapes of Giovanni Battista Tiepolo and Thomas Cole, the camp photographs of Pierre et Gilles, and the acid-washed aesthetic of Ed Paschke. Dreamfully romantic and enchantingly seductive, the sitters in Ferrell’s portraits are anything but ordinary and often express the melodrama conveyed in the work of George Tooker. Embodying the essence of those closest to him, Ferrell illuminates his figures with a meticulous detail inspired by the technical precision of René Magritte.

While being a gay man plays its part greatly in Ferrell’s work, ultimately, the artist articulates, “These are my friends and people that I have an emotional resonance with. I want to put positive images of gay men and queer identifying individuals into the world, so we can diversify the often tragic canon of LGBTQ film and art.” Ferrell’s works depict queer individuals living their lives at ease and doing ordinary things, “but through a wonderful sense of immortality – free from indignity, oppression, and hostility,” O’Neill-Butler adds, “Ferrell’s work is all about positive liberty—the possibility of acting, or the fact of acting, in such a way as to take control of one’s life. This, to me, makes his work slyly revolutionary.”

Ethereal landscapes of trees, clouds, and flowers surround the sitters to reinforce the importance of self-discovery and reinvent the role of the male figure in the canon of landscape painting. There’s affection and admiration in his portraits, as he gently brings to life the images of people he’s close with, rendering them with a careful and considerate touch.

DANNY FERRELL (b.1991, Flint, MI) received his Master of Fine Arts from the Rhode Island School of Design, Providence, RI, and his Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Pennsylvania State University, State College, PA.

Recent solo exhibitions include “Castle in the Sky,” Miles McEnery Gallery, New York, NY (forthcoming); “Honey,” Marinaro, New York, NY; “Magic Hour,” Galerie PACT, Paris, France; “Behind the Curtain” (with Hiba Schahbaz and Sophia Narrett), Mindy Solomon Gallery, Miami, FL;“Solo Booth,” New Art DealersAlliance, Galerie PACT, NewYork, NY; “He’s American” (with Devan Shimoyama), Pittsburgh Center for the Arts, Pittsburgh, PA, and “Cakes,” Patterson Gallery, State College, PA. 

Recent group exhibitions include “Just As I Am,” 1969 Gallery, New York, NY; “Sound and Color” (curated by Brian Alfred), Miles McEnery Gallery, New York, NY; “Vortex” (curated by Allison Zuckerman), Kravets Wehby, New York, NY; “Surely Some Revelation Is At Hand,” Marinaro, New York, NY; “Sit Still” (curated by Patty Horing and Deborah Brown), Anna Zorina Gallery,New York, NY; “After and Because Of,” Marsh Gallery, Indiana Unversity, Indianapolis, IN; “Bathers,” Bass and Rainer, San Francisco, CA; “Bang On,” Divine Hammer, Able Baker Contemporary, Portland, ME; “Potpourri,” Neumann Wolfson Fine Art, New York, NY; “Artist Who Teach,” Westmoreland Museum of American Art, Greensburg, PA; “Life’s Rich Pageant,” Jeff Bailey Gallery, Hudson, NY; “The Staging of Vulernability,” SPRING/BREAK Art Show, 4 Times Square, NY; “Canon Fodder,” Zoller Gallery, University Park, PA; “Vernacular Spectacular!,” Gelman Gallery, Providence, RI; “Intimacy Queered,” Gelman Gallery, Providence, RI; “RISD 2016 MFA Painting Thesis Exhibition,” Nancy Margolis Gallery, New York, NY; “The Boston Biennial,” Atlantic Works Gallery, Boston, MA; “RISD Graduate Thesis,” Rhode Island Convention Center, Providence, RI; “Halfmasters,” Microscope Gallery, Brooklyn, NY;“ Boston Young Contemporaries,” 808 Commonwealth Gallery, Boston, MA; “Pale Firework,” Gelman Gallery, Providence, RI; “U.F.O. Hunters, RISD Painting Biennial, Sol Koffler Gallery, Providence, RI;“The Sex Offensive,” Propeller Gallery, Toronto, Canada; “Unmarked,” The Active Space, New York, NY; “SOVA Alumni Work,” HUB-Robeson Gallery, State College, PA, and “School of Visual Arts BFA Exhibition,” Zoller Gallery, State College, PA.

He is the recipient of the Rhode Island School of Design Graduate Fellowship, Rhode Island School of Design, Providence, RI, and the Creative Achievement Award, Pennsylvania State University, State College, PA.

Ferrell lives and works in Pittsburgh, PA.