Ryan Hogan, a 2008 Freed-Hardeman University art and philosophy graduate, was recently named the “Best Artist to Watch” by Nashville Scene, which features news on local arts and entertainment. His honor was listed in the “Best of Nashville 2011: Arts, Music & Entertainment Writers’ Choice.” In the article, Joe Nolan had the following to say about Hogan and his work:
Ryan Hogan had a busy year, presenting successive shows at Twist, Blackbird Tattoo and Gallery, and Seed Space. We're drawn to artists with multidisciplinary backgrounds, and it's no surprise that Hogan's education in philosophy plays a role in his ambitious sculpture installations. He presents his pieces as pure objects without discernible context or easily recognized representational equivalents. We're anxious to see what he does next. You should be too.
Hogan has been busy since graduating from FHU. “Since graduation, I have made sure to exhibit when I've been presented with the opportunity. Most of the exhibitions have been in Nashville/Middle Tennessee. Moving forward, I have an exhibition with Jaime Raybin at Northwestern University from Nov. 4 – Dec. 11. I am also a part of the CSArt program,” he said. The CSArt program, or Community Supported Art program, allows shareholders to invest in artists like Hogan in the Nashville area.
Hogan adds, “Coming out of Freed-Hardeman, I felt that I had a direction with my work and that it consisted of a cohesive body.” He credits Warren Greene, who “encouraged developing strong conceptual underpinnings,” and Laquita Thomson, who “emphasized the technical side of art making and the importance of good craftsmanship,” for focusing his direction and balancing him as an art student.
Dr. Barbara England, chair of the Department of Fine Arts, remembers that “like most students who come to Freed, Ryan, as a freshman, wasn't sure which direction to pursue in his studies. I am glad he followed his passion, majoring in art and philosophy. I knew he would do well. He was a very talented art student who had a good work ethic, which when combined with his talents will make him successful in the world of art.”