Without hesitation, photographer Ryan McGinley continues to dream and, quite generously, invite us into that dream world, one filled with the innocent yearnings of youth, curiosity, lust and magic.
His exhibition, entitled Life Adjustment Center, in San Francisco transports us there, with stops in his New York studio, swimming pools, forests and what could be the far reaches of outer space. And why not? McGinley’s imagination and expression of seemingly innocent moments reach beyond the stars. It begins with a series of black and white portraits, with models against a plain white backdrop posing with a deer, an owl, a tarantula and other animals, creating an intimate and improbable moment that deliciously blurs the distinction of what is real and what is imagined. Delicate and honest, they show an unforgettable kinship with the animals. A powerful optimism comes to life.
The second body of the exhibition captures McGinley’s ever-expanding oeuvre of road trip images. A naked woman teeters on the edge of a railway track while another dashes through the woods in a blaze of sparks. It seems he has captured them doing something incredibly daring and we quickly realise it is a stunning and freeing moment, for the model and for us, looking on. They are like a dream, a dream we hope never ends.
‘Ryan McGinley: Life Adjustment Center’ runs until 11 December at Ratio 3, 1447 Stevenson Street, San Francisco