A visual ramble through some old sketchbooks from travels with a pen and brush.

Travel Sketchbooks


Passions & Inspiration

A biographical page on art influences, aviation, adventures, and on the 'presence of absence'.

Exhibitions & Publications

Selected exhibitions and publications in which artworks on this website have featured.



As a realist painter I face a certain difficulty: the all-too-obvious tangible presence of the subject. Beyond sight or touch another reality is mediated by the slightest gesture or effect, a trace, the shadows of private thought, or a left-behindness suggesting some absence. The inspiration may be, at its birth, a mere 'whim' or wisp, a wistfulness or yearning, a sense of incompleteness. Yet the place at which artist and viewer first converse is the tactile and beautiful reality of the visible subject itself. Its phenomena are often minutely explored in my work in anticipation of a glimpse of what endures forever.


from my Venice sketchbook



All images copyright © Fergus A Ryan

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Fergus Andrew Ryan is a realist painter born in Dublin in 1948. His finely-detailed paintings have been exhibited at the Royal Hibernian Academy and the Royal Ulster Academy of Arts, included in the Government of Ireland's State collection, and featured in International Artist magazine. His egg tempera portrait Harold was exhibited in the National Gallery of Ireland in the Hennessy Portrait Prize 2016 shortlist exhibition. Influenced by the thoughtful works of Andrew Wyeth and contemporary realists, the artist has studied with Israel Hershberg in northern Lazio, and spent the spring of 2015 at the Florence Academy of Art. Fergus was formerly an Aer Lingus pilot on long-haul 707 and 747 operations in North America, the Caribbean, Africa and the Middle East. He holds a first class honors degree in theology and biblical studies  from Trinity College Dublin (MA, Dubl). He is married to Sarah.

Artist Bio