Artist: Eric Ruby
Project: Leanen n’ Dreamen
Description: Interested in the ways in which the climate of the South “coalesces with the lifestyle and culture” in the region, Eric Ruby celebrates “light, color, heat, and haze,” in his project Leanen n’ Dreamen, exploring how these atmospheric elements inform a way of life in Tennessee, North Carolina, and Missouri. Ruby’s subjects range from farm animals to domestic stills to unassuming portraits, but his conscientious documentation of light and texture creates a throughline in an otherwise seemingly disjointed collection. Motifs emerge when the faces of portrait subjects are repeatedly hidden in shadow and the glare off a library book’s cellophane dust jacket is echoed in the reflection off a cluttered counter in another frame. By capturing in a range of settings the similar ways in which light falls and shadows form, Ruby identifies a shared experience of life in these places.