Rob Matthews

b. 1974, Wilson, NC
The simplest explanation that I give about my work is that I only make art about things that I consider more important than art.
Archaeology and Christmas
Archaeology and Christmas

Rob Matthews’ practice is lauded for strong technical caliber, intellectual content and narrative power. Evidenced in his mastery of line and attention to surface, his work is grounded in years of traditional drawing practices. Dealing with universal themes of mortality, human frailty and time’s passage through political and social unrest, he internalizes poignant issues of forced migration and ISIL assassinations in his most recent works. He expands his trajectory of graphite drawings at an arresting scale with the incorporation of painting and collage in inks and gouache. Influenced by Cubism as well as Renaissance portraiture, Matthews layers bodies in mythic proportions on abstracted, saturated fields of color. As if haunted, his figures re-appear in various scales and forms across canvases, fluidly coexisting among areas of obsessive cross-hatching, contrasting lines, intricate surface detail, and subtle, stylized forms. With the integration of apocalyptic symbolism from music history and the Bible, Matthews confronts the the arduous dualities of pain and redemption.

Rob Matthews lives and works in Nashville. He received his MFA in painting and printmaking from the Virginia Commonwealth University and his BFA in painting from the University of Tennessee-Knoxville. He is a two-time winner of the Pennsylvania Council on the Arts Fellowship award and won the Pew Fellowship in the Arts award in 2009. His work is frequently exhibited in New York, Philadelphia, and Nashville and is in the collections of North Carolina Museum of Art, the Philadelphia Museum of the Arts, the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts, and the de Young Museum.

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Archaeology and Christmas
Archaeology and Christmas
Hendersonville 1990
Hendersonville 1990
Homemade Jams
Homemade Jams
Summer Summer Summer
Summer Summer Summer
Taker and Giver
Taker and Giver
Selah 1
Selah 1
Selah 2
Selah 2
Selah 3
Selah 3
Immaterial Witness
Immaterial Witness
Alan and Stacey
Alan and Stacey
Imagined Conversations
Imagined Conversations
Jouy (Work Harder)
Jouy (Work Harder)
The Dove
The Dove
Pawking Metaws
Pawking Metaws
Masks
Masks
Black Quartet I
Black Quartet I
Black Quartet II
Black Quartet II
Black Quartet III
Black Quartet III
Black Quartet IV
Black Quartet IV
Derpetual distraction Machine
Derpetual distraction Machine
Archaeology and Christmas
Archaeology and Christmas
acrylic on canvas, 80x60
2023
Hendersonville 1990
Hendersonville 1990
acrylic on canvas, 80x60
2023
Homemade Jams
Homemade Jams
acrylic on canvas, 80x60
2023
Summer Summer Summer
Summer Summer Summer
acrylic on canvas, 80x60
2023
Taker and Giver
Taker and Giver
acrylic on canvas, 80x60
2023
Selah 1
Selah 1
acrylic on canvas, 80x60
2023
Selah 2
Selah 2
acrylic on canvas, 80x60
2023
Selah 3
Selah 3
acrylic oin canvas, 80x60
2023
Immaterial Witness
Immaterial Witness
acrylic on canvas, 80x60
2023
Alan and Stacey
Alan and Stacey
acrylic on canvas, 60x60
2023
Imagined Conversations
Imagined Conversations
acrylic on canvas, 60x60
2023
Jouy (Work Harder)
Jouy (Work Harder)
acrylic on canvas, 60x60
2023
The Dove
The Dove
acrylic on canvas, 60x60
2023
Pawking Metaws
Pawking Metaws
acrylic on canvas, 64.25x48.25
2023
Masks
Masks
acrylic on canvas, 20x16
2023
Black Quartet I
Black Quartet I
acrylic on canvas, 24x18
2023
Black Quartet II
Black Quartet II
acrylic on canvas, 24x18
2023
Black Quartet III
Black Quartet III
acrylic on canvas, 24x18
2023
Black Quartet IV
Black Quartet IV
acrylic on canvas, 24x18
2023
Derpetual distraction Machine
Derpetual distraction Machine
acrylic on canvas, 16x12
2022

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