Artist Statement

General Orientation

The human condition—in its most common, every day forms—becomes remarkable when observed closely and without a desire to impose names.

A thing I found on a street in last night’s dream inspires me. Ebony keys, a purple heart, a woman’s comb and unaccountable bodily objects—in the morning—hang on the sunset of my recollection. What today is new and useful will, in time, be worn out and forgotten. Collected, they become like beasts form a primordial jungle. Alone they are artifacts from a future not yet grasped. They twist and rotate as they emerge into awareness and then fade away. So I think of my works as “future relics.”

I find ancient artifacts and architecture mysterious and compelling. They seem like mathematical proofs enshrined in a physical form but exhibit the decay of dystopia. These objects denote the power of silence and emptiness but vibrate with the absurdity of conflicting realities. They are worn with time but spontaneous in their appearance. If it were possible, would not a “theory of everything” be required to explain each of these any-day facts?

Creativity and Inspiration

 The tension between material and meaning vibrate in my work. I am inspired by the patterns of the natural world and the way nature itself embodies material and meaning. The surrender of all our creations to the forces of nature and time is inevitable, but I find comfort in the patterns of the natural world, even as they etch pathos into our accomplishments. So I create small monuments to a world that is behind or in-between moments: like a graph of a quantum particle, the jeweled feather of a bird, or a pagoda at dawn. Art is my path to the sheer fact of existence and the wonder of its manifestations.

Matthew James Stone