* All images used with permission. Please do not distribute without first contacting the artist.
Danny Ferrell was born in Flint, Michigan, and spent his formative years in rural Pennsylvania. Deeply conservative, most placed religion above all other virtues, and anyone deviating from religious law was treated as a herald of immorality. Ferrell’s love for other men violated the cultural norms, forcing him to conceal his identity from those in the public sphere. Consequently, his work represents fantasies and fears about the Other in the form of the queer male experience. By creating code homoerotic images of ubiquitous scenes that could appeal to mainstream audiences, the work is both universal and human. In his new paintings he looks at flesh, fabric, and frisson as Ingres might have had he spent more time on the beach studying tattoos. Unbuttoned, with rolled-up sleeves, his figures know it is better to glow than sweat. Ferrell admires Cadmus and Tooker and follows their lead to bring together the epic and banal in his work. Ferrell received his BFA in painting from Penn State University and a M.F.A from the Rhode Island School of Design. He has exhibited in New York City, Pittsburgh and the New England area.
"I hate to admit that the word "beauty" comes to mind before anything else while viewing Danny's work, but in times like these I want to be captivated. Danny offers his viewer a fantastical look at his experiences as a queer male, raised in a society where identifying as gay was something to "fear" and not to "behold" - this is why I find beauty in his work, it is not just the colors, or technical skill, it is the presence of love and vulnerability he shares through his subjects that pull me in."