Monday Muse: Ryan Heshka

Today's Monday Muse features my most current, but also strongest artist crush of recent memory: Ryan Heshka. His mysterious, long-legged ladies, dangerous dapper men, and bizarre alien monsters are all at once nostalgic, inventive, grotesque, and beautiful! 

I wish I could remember exactly where I first saw his work. I think it might have been shared by a gallery I follow on Instagram or maybe from another artist? I really wish that I could remember, but I feel such an attachment to his work that it seems like I've always known it. 


Ryan Heshka's works are painted on found vintage paper, which adds depth and texture to his pieces, and his subject matter is influenced by vintage comic books and B-Movies, as well as "pulp magazines, natural history, graphic design and music, movies and animation."  

His work has a sense of humor which I appreciate, and his use of color, text, and subject matter give a perfect blend of sweet and sinister. He isn't afraid to use bold color or work with the texture in the paper that he paints on. Doodles, text, and images from the past become part of each painting, which makes the piece itself seem new but somehow familiar.

As an early birthday present my husband purchased one of his works for me (the above piece on the left titled "Our Latest Thrill")! I'm so excited that I can hardly stand it, and I'm still looking for the perfect place to display it! It's so petite and detailed and absolutely lovely. I might have a party just so that everyone can come look at it.

One of my favorite pieces of his, which I have talked about in a previous post, is his Mean Girls Club series, a pink and black zine about some super sinister ladies and their 113th meeting of their secret club. If you still haven't snagged a copy of this weird and wonderful little booklet, I highly recommend you do!

So, I'd like to thank you Ryan Heshka for all of the badass ladies you paint! I hear your work might be coming to Nashville soon? I sure hope so!