Raised in San Francisco, the son of a plastic surgeon and a fine-artist, Christian Ristow developed an early and keen interest in the intersection between aesthetics and structure. After receiving a B.A. in Architecture from Columbia University in New York, he returned to San Francisco and began his apprenticeship with the groundbreaking robot performance group Survival Research Laboratories. Inspired by the experience and influenced by the works of sculptor Jean Tingueley, architect Santiago Calatrava, and artist H.R. Giger, Ristow began engineering his own distinctively biomechanical creations. After moving to Los Angeles in 1998, Ristow put his robots to work, orchestrating a series of solo shows exploring themes of unchecked power, sexual aggression, and human mortality.
Ristow’s high-octane art has been seen at venues ranging from The Bergamot Station Gallery Complex in Santa Monica to The Blasthaus Gallery in San Francisco, from The Coachella Valley Music and Arts Festival in Southern California to the Automatic Art Space in Phoenix, Arizona.
His work has been featured in books like Robo Sapiens and Body Probe, in magazines such as Wired, Los Angeles Magazine, National Geographic, Spin, Raygun, Penthouse and Bizarre, as well as on Current TV and The Discovery Channel’s Monster Garage and Monster Nation. His commercial robotic work has been featured in Bicentennial Man, Stephen Spielberg’s A.I., Spider-Man 2, and Zathura, among other feature films and television commercials.