Mark Ryden is an American painter, part of the Lowbrow art movement. He was dubbed the godfather of pop surrealism by Interview Magazine. Artnet named Ryden and his wife, the painter Marion Peck, the King and Queen of Pop Surrealism and one of the ten most important art couples in Los Angeles. Rydens aesthetic is developed from subtle amalgams of many sources, from Ingres, David and other French classicists to Little Golden Books. Ryden also draws his inspiration from anything that will evoke mystery old toys, anatomical models, stuffed animals, skeletons and religious ephemera found in flea markets.
Ryden was born in Medford, Oregon on January 20, 1963, but was raised in Southern California. Ryden is the son of Barbara and Keith Ryden. His father made a living painting, restoring and customizing cars. He has two sisters and two brothers, one a fellow artist named Keyth Ryden, who works under the name KRK. Ryden graduated from the Art Center College of Design in Pasadena in 1987.