New York, USA
About my work
I believe that self is a performance and that notions of self are developed in direct relationship to the images and information provided to us via the media, religion & our respective peer groups and families. I am interested in exploring and examining the power of fine art, faith, pop culture, marketing and technology to inform the development of that performance. The images presented here are from my on-going portrait series which I began in 2012 called All Black Kings Go To Heaven. The original goal of the series was to present portraits of African American men in settings reminiscent of advertisements for lifestyle brands like Ralph Lauren and Abercrombie & Fitch to cause the viewer to rethink notions of what it means to be black in America and what people actually mean when statements are uttered like "He looks so all-American." This was inspired by a visit to an Abercrombie & Fitch store and my appreciation for the beautiful images used to sell their products and the lifestyle the represented and my frustration with the erasure of people of color and black men in particular from the conversation. I remain proud of the work presented here and it remains a part of my legacy, but the new images currently in production jettison completely any adoration of the oppressive manifestation of the so-called American dream. Self IS A PERFORMANCE and as such my work will continue to examine how the media has used imagery and storytelling to condition people to view marginalized groups with suspicion and contempt, while upholding false notions of the superiority of one racial group over another. We are ALL God's creation and as such we are ALL worthy of love, respect, and adoration. We all fall short, but with love, grace, and a commitment to being our authentic selves perhaps we can ALL go to heaven. All Black Kings Go To Heaven: Cykeem 30" x 20" digital C-print All Black Kings Go To Heaven:Minkah and Scott 30" x 20" digital C-print All Black Kings Go To Heaven: Blur Team 30" x 20" digital C-print
I was born in Saint Louis, Missouri and raised in Los Angeles, California. I am a self-taught visual artist, photographer, filmmaker and musician working primarily with themes related to identity, sub-culture and popular culture. I live and work in Harlem, New York. My fine art practice includes photography, filmmaking, painting, collage, & recorded music. While my commercial photography business includes fashion editorials, portraiture and events. As a visual artist I have exhibited in multiple group shows in NYC and beyond. My exhibitions include the group exhibitions: Masterpiece at Band of Vices Art Gallery in Los Angeles (June 19 – August 7, 2020); The Subject is Black at Leslie Lohman Project Space in New York City (Fall 2014); Curate NYC at Rush Arts Gallery in New York City (October 2010); The Great LGBT Photo Show at Leslie Lohman Museum in New York City (June 16 – July 10, 2010); Latent: An En Foco Photo Exhibition at Umbrella Arts in New York City (April 3 – 27, 2010); White Lies: Black Noise at Rush Arts Gallery (November 14, 2009 – January 24, 2009). Solo exhibitions include: Brother Outsider Won't You Come Inside at GMAD in Brooklyn, New York (Fall 2014); A Portrait of The Life (August 2012) at Billie's Black; This is Urban Pop at Chi Chiz in New York City, (August 2010 – September 2010); Introducing Ricky Day at Bus Boys and Poets in Washington DC (Jan/February 2008). I directed the digital short social media film series “I Am Native Son” in 2019 and in April of 2020 I wrote, directed, edited, and starred in “Reflections” a theological reflection short film for NY Theological Seminary. My photography has appeared in numerous magazines, blogs and websites including Candid Magazine, Ammo Mag, Sheen, Bleu Magazine, New York Post, AM New York & UrbanPopLife.net to name a few. My clients past and present include: Google, YouTube, Native Son, Ford Models NY, UnitedHealthcare, Click Models, Boss Models NY, Major Models, U Model Management, Signature Talent Agency, Interscope Records, First Corinthian Baptist Church, Walrond for Congress campaign, MBK Entertainment, PMK-BNC, Nivea, Eucerin, Aquaphor, Biersdorf Inc., Interlex Communications, Bevy Smith's "Dining With Bevy, Life With Vision", Chef Roble, True Indian Hair, accessories line Ank Man, Blur Communications, The Fellowship of Affirming Ministries and many others.
All images on this page are © by Ricky Day and not to be used, published or downloaded without permission