Founded in 2013 by Mary Ryan and Jeffrey Lee, RYAN LEE has established itself as a welcoming place of discovery and dialogue for art ranging from post-war art to the contemporary. The gallery is led by two partners of different generations and backgrounds with over six decades of combined experiences informing its unique approach to its programming. A champion of both emerging and established artists and estates, RYAN LEE is committed to presenting innovative and unexpected exhibitions across all spectrums of art practices, including painting, video, sculpture, and performance. The gallery takes chances on a wide variety of boundary-pushing artists; their work is inherently experimental and pushes political, cultural, material, or technical boundaries. In addition, RYAN LEE has, throughout its history, demonstrated its long-standing interest and dedication to feminist, Black and Asian American, as well as queer narratives in the twentieth and twenty first centuries.
Using its expansive institutional network, the gallery collaborates with museums throughout the United States and beyond to include its artists’ work in important exhibitions, and place their work in prominent private or public collections. In order to expand the visibility and markets for the artists it supports, the gallery creates platforms to connect with collectors and curators via exhibitions, fair presentations, collaborations, primary research, and academic catalogues. RYAN LEE seeks to build and preserve legacies of artists it works with to ensure its lasting impact on art history and the generations to come.
The gallery has placed work in the collections of the Art Institute of Chicago, Baltimore Museum of Art, Boca Raton Museum of Art, British Museum, Brooklyn Museum of Art, Cantor Museum of Art at Stanford University, Cleveland Museum of Art, Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Detroit Institute of Arts, Getty Research Institute, Guggenheim Museum, Herbert F. Johnson Museum of Art at Cornell University, Huis Marseille Museum voor Fotografie, Los Angeles County Museum of Art, Lucas Museum of Narrative Art, McNay Art Museum, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Minneapolis Institute of Art, Museum of Modern Art of Fort Worth, Museum of Modern Art New York, Museum at the Rhode Island School of Design, Museum of Fine Arts Boston, Nasher Museum at Duke University, New Britain Museum of American Art, Philadelphia Museum of Art, Saint Louis Art Museum, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Sprengel Museum Hannover, Frances Lehman Loeb Art Center, Whitney Museum of American Art, and the Yale University Art Gallery, among others.
Major institutions have presented work by RYAN LEE Gallery artists in solo and group exhibitions, including the Akron Art Museum, Art Gallery of Ontario, Blanton Museum of Art, British Museum, Brooklyn Museum, Centre de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona, Cleveland Museum of Art, Crystal Bridges, Espoo Museum of Modern Art, Groninger Museum, Hood Museum of Art at Dartmouth, Institute of Contemporary Art Boston, Indianapolis Museum of Art, Kemper Museum of Art, Kunstverein Amsterdam, MASS MoCA, McNay Art Museum, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Millesgården Stockholm, Museum of Modern Art, Museo di Palazzo Grimani, Museo Ettore Fico, Museum of Fine Arts Boston, Museum of Modern Art Fort Worth, National Portrait Gallery London, National Taiwan Museum of Fine Art, New Museum, Noguchi Museum, Palazzo Fortuny, Parrish Art Museum, Queens Museum of Art, SFMoMA, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, St. Louis Art Museum, Studio Museum in Harlem, Tate Modern, and the Whitney Museum. Major biennials that have featured gallery artists include the 10th Gwangju Biennale, Asian Art Biennial, Bienal de Habana, dOCUMENTA 13, Kochi Biennale, Venice Biennale, and the Yinchuan Biennale.