Neo-Assemblage: The Creative Force of Finley Fryer

Share Article

Three-Story Exhibition Featuring "Unique Creations of Finley Fryer"

Experience the image of the found object popularized by the San Francisco Bay Area Funk Movement as it has been reinterpreted and developed in a modern context by the talented and multifaceted artist Finley Fryer. On Wednesday January the fourth, the Natsoulas Center for the Arts will dedicate all three floors of the gallery to “Unique Creations of Finley Fryer.” The exhibit will feature a diverse body of work ranging in medium from Fryer’s expressive color collage paintings to his organic consumer waste sculptures and will span from earlier in his career to his more recent developments.

Symbolically towering in front of the gallery itself, at nearly eighteen feet in height and approximately 2,300 lbs in weight, is the daunting Stan the Submerging Man, an internationally acclaimed sculpture of Fryer’s constructed and installed at the 1999 Burning man Festival in the Black Rock Desert, Nevada. A collaborative piece constructed with the help of Fryer’s wife, artist Jayne Bruck Fryer, and Kirk LeClaire—whose wildly eclectic musical show called Stan’s Room provided the inspiration for the statue of the titular character—Stan aka the Diver serves as a brilliant introduction to the exhibition as well as an emblematic induction into the creative mind of the artist himself. Stan’s internal structure is fabricated of various dimensions of steel and can be disassembled into fourteen individual pieces. Using 600 tubes of clear latex acrylic adhesive caulk, Fryer attached an exterior ‘skin’ of donated plastic and colored vinyl’s collected by LeClaire that are illuminated at night by 1000 LED lights, illuminating the reclaimed consumer detritus in the spirit of a new realism.

“My first memory of making art is at about four years old, when my mother rolled butcher paper across the floor, laying out our crayons, pencils and paints”—Since his humble indoctrination into the world of art, Fryer has not looked back. He received his BFA from Davis in the mid-seventies studying under pioneers of the first and second generation of the Bay Area Figurative Movement such as Roy de Forest, William T. Wiley, Wayne Thiebaud and Manuel Neri. Despite the rich environment he was exposed to, Fryer felt constricted by an underlying conformity that did not suit him. Traveling east to work in lumber mills and then returning to west to repair stained glass church windows, Fryer compiled a collection of loose pieces of glass that would later serve as a catalyst for his assemblage constructions. Currently, he resides in Dunsmuir, California where he has found a respite from urban society that has allowed him to develop art on a grand scale and with a spiritual awareness which, entertaining a post-modern sense of loss, remains optimistic nonetheless as it redefines our understanding of waste and decay. “I guess I have come to a point where this studio in this small town has become a home and the place where my wife, Jayne, and I have come to create, collaborate and send those creations out into the world.”

# # #

Share article on social media or email:

View article via:

Pdf Print

Contact Author

Nancy Resler
JOHN NATSOULAS GALLERY
(530) 756-3938
Email >
Visit website