Christopher Ryan, M.F.A.

Professor of Art and Design, Gelbke Fine Arts Center Director

Chris Ryan


Christopher Ryan teaches all levels of painting, drawing and 2-D design, and serves as Director of the Gelbke Fine Arts Center Gallery. Ryan is a realist painter whose current work springs from a fascination with antiquity, the history of art, and his experiences living and traveling in Italy. Ryan has exhibited his work in solo and group shows in the U.S. and abroad, and every couple of years he takes Hiram students to Tuscany to participate in his Creative Space study abroad course. Other courses integrate Ryan’s concern with threats to global heritage sites and monuments endangered by climate, mass tourism, armed conflict, and illegal smuggling.


  • M.F.A., Painting/Drawing, Bowling Green State University
  • M.A., Modern European History, University of Virginia
  • B.A., History/Art History minor, John Carroll University

Research Interests

Christopher Ryan has several diverse bodies of artwork, all of which reflect his interest in art history and memorable spaces. His work ranges from highly realist “still life” paintings referencing ancient and medieval floor designs to more spontaneous paintings and drawings of observed landscapes. In both cases, his interest is in “charged” spaces, intricate compositions, and juxtapositional relationships that hint at partial narratives and psychological complexity.

Select Exhibitions

  • Lucid Moments & Liminal Spaces, solo exhibition, Thiel College, Greensville, Pennsylvania, 2017
  • One Year After, curated six-person show, Hiram College, Ohio, 2016
  • Exposition des artistes américains, group exhibition for residents of the Alfred and Trafford Klots
    International Program for Artists, Abbaye de Léhon, Brittany, France, 2015
  • Christopher Ryan, Paintings, solo exhibition, Kent State University, Trumbull, Warren, Ohio, 2014
  • 5th Annual May Show, Lakeland Community College, Lakeland, OH. Winner: Best of Show, 2014

Fun Facts

  • Avid Cyclist
  • Working Knowledge of Italian & French
  • Action Movie Aficionado

Additional Links

Personal Website   PDF Icon linked to my CV   Sample Syllabus