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Duke Riley

Title & Date: Octopus Study (2012)
Material: Graphite on canary paper
Dimensions: 8.75" x 5.25"
Represented by: MagnanMetz Gallery

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"Octopus Study" by Duke Riley

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Duke Riley’s work addresses the prospect of forgotten frontiers on the edge and inside overdeveloped urban areas. He is interested in the struggle of marginal peoples to sustain independent spaces within all-encompassing societies, the tension between individual and collective behavior, and the conflict with institutional power. He pursues an alternative view of hidden borderlands and their inhabitants through drawing, printmaking, mosaic, sculpture, performative interventions, and video structured as complex multimedia installations. Throughout his projects Riley profiles the space where water meets the land, traditionally marking the periphery of urban society, what lies beyond rigid moral constructs, a sense of danger and possibility.

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Category: Works on Paper

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From: Queens

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Description: Duke Riley’s work addresses the prospect of forgotten frontiers on the edge and inside overdeveloped urban areas. He is interested in the struggle of marginal peoples to sustain independent spaces within all-encompassing societies, the tension between individual and collective behavior, and the conflict with institutional power. He pursues an alternative view of hidden borderlands and their inhabitants through drawing, printmaking, mosaic, sculpture, performative interventions, and video structured as complex multimedia installations. Riley is also a tattoo artist, and Octopus Study is a sketch for a custom tattoo.

Artist Biography:Duke Riley (born 1972) earned a BFA in painting from Rhode Island School of Design, and an MFA in Sculpture from Pratt Institute. Based in Brooklyn, he is known for a series of large-scale interventions and installations which re-examine history as a tool to address contemporary social conflict, often involving marginalized waterfront communities. Riley founded East River Tattoo, which specializes in custom designs influenced by maritime folk art and 19th century traditional tattooing. He works in a variety of medium, ranging from complex video installation to antiquated maritime craft.