THESE IMAGES ARE BY MARK RYDEN, one of my favorite contemporary painters. Ryden’s imagery lets his own personal world of childhood fairy tales collide with something darker—nightmares that include fuzzy animals, cuts of meat, wood nymphs, religious figures and an obsession with Abraham Lincoln. Like the soothing songs of mythological Sirens, Ryden’s imagery will beckon you softly in with it’s fairytale innocence. Once there, you realize you are oddly comfortable with big-eyed little girls with butcher knives and you become a follower. Ryden becomes your dream master, your drug-dealer, your edge walker—and you like it.

There images are from his 2006 Wood Nymph series, part of his sellout exhibition The Tree Show at the Michael Kohn Gallery. I have written about Ryden in the past and you can see that post here.

If you have never heard of Mark Ryden, you can see more of his work on his website here.