Ryan McLennan was born in Norfolk, Virginia in 1980. In 2002, he received a BFA from the Painting and Printmaking Department of Virginia Commonwealth University. Since then, he has exhibited work in Los Angeles, New York, Boston, and Richmond, Virginia. He is a recipient of the 2008–2009 Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Fellowship and 2010 West Prize finalist and grand prize winner. Ryan currently lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.