The Art of Darkness at Heartspot, October 2020

Here is some recent work on display at the Heartspot Gallery, in East Providence, RI. Two of my sculptures were accepted into the “Art of Darkness” exhibition by juror Sean Harrington.



This piece is “Blindspot” . Media is found-object assemblage.

This piece is “Blindspot” . Media is found-object assemblage.


This piece is “Inquisitor” . Media is found-object assemblage.

This piece is “Inquisitor” . Media is found-object assemblage.

This exhibition is open to the public from October 17th through November 17th 2020.

Be sure to visit https://www.heartspotart.com/ for details!

SCAA Members show Sculpture Award 2020

In what has been a particularly difficult year, this week brought a positive development. This past month, I submitted my found object assemblage sculpture “Magistrate” to the South County Art Association’s annual Members show. This exhibition is one in which the work is eligible for prizes in various media, as awarded by an outside juror. This year, the juror for the show is Nancy Gaucher Thomas, who is well known as a highly esteemed artist and arts organizer.

Visiting the gallery, I was very honored to see that I had been awarded the Jim Visconti Award for best sculpture for my work. This award is particularly significant to me, as Jim was a friend and mentor to me back when I was a young high school art student.

There is a wonderful video available in which Ms. Gaucher Thomas talks about the show and the awards that she presented. You can see it here:

SCAA Members show 2020 Awards

I would like to extend my deepest thanks to Ms. Gaucher Thomas, and to the hardworking staff and volunteers at the SCAA, who have kept going even under unusually challenging circumstances.



South County Art Association’s “Great Art Heist” 2020

Every year, the South County Art Association holds their “Great Art Heist”, a festive fundraiser in which the attendees get to choose from various artists’ works to “steal”.


https://www.southcountyart.org/uploads/1/1/8/4/118491250/art_heist_postcard__1_.pdf

While this year, the COVID-19 situation means that the event will not be an in-person experience, it will still be held online!

My contribution this year for the Art Heist will be my found object assemblage character Klarp, together with a special display case.

The original sculpture ‘Klarp’ with special display case.

In years past, My characters have found happy homes at this wonderful event, so if you might be interested in having Klarp for yourself, this is a great opportunity to register to be part of the Art Heist!

A vector illustration of Klarp, based on a 3D CAD model.

Here is a shot of the original sculpture before paint and surfaces were applied! You can see all of the different parts and pieces that he is made from.

A recent sketch of Klarp, ink and colored pencil.

A few long overdue updates

The past few months have been quite the challenge, on account of the whole COVID-19 crisis. It made the rest of the spring semester particularly difficult, and has been a period of having to make some significant adjustments.

One thing that has been changed is the entire arts community. Shows and events have been cancelled, rearranged, or retooled in theme. The majority of shows now have a primarily online presence, even when there is physical work in the gallery.

When lockdown went into effect, the South County Art Association put out a call to the membership to share an image of their work as part of the show ” Giving Art a Voice”, with the following description:

Art is a reflection of our society.
As our world changes,
so does the way we express it. 

We asked our community how their art
can communicate, inspire, and soothe
during these unprecedented times.
​This is what they shared.

The piece that I put in was my sculpture “The High Priest”

As I wrote:
“What I appreciate most about found object assemblage is the role of chance, and the power of unexpected juxtapositions and relationships. I let the pieces tell me what they want to become. Ultimately my sculptural “work” is a process of infinitely recombinant play.”

Indeed, I find that sculpting is one of the activities that I find more relaxing at this time. I’m indeed fortunate that I have the space and resources to pursue my work in this way>


On that note, the Art League Rhode Island asked their members to submit images of work created during this time as part of their show “The Trailing Quarter”.


https://artleagueri.org/galleries/gallery-the-trailing-quarter/


For that show, I submitted three of my smaller character sculptures:

Following on the heels of this exhibition, Art League Rhode Island then out out the call for the show HOPE “ONward & ARTward”


https://artleagueri.org/galleries/gallery-hope-onward-artward/

For that show I buckled down to create a brand new illustration, and the resulting piece that I created and submitted is “Keeping Busy”.


“One Zero One” Exhibition

This Past Wednesday, I traveled to the  Vets in Providence for the opening reception of Art League Rhode Island‘s ‘One Zero One’ exhibition. This was a juried show based on the idea of the ambivalent relationship of the digital world to the analog world.

I had two of my pieces accepted by juror David DeMelim.

The first piece is my found object assemblage “Harbinger”


And the second piece in this show is my large format Vector Illustration “Hard Reboot”


This show runs until Friday, November 15th.

A recent interview on “Art Matters” with Wayne Quackenbush

This past month, I was invited to attend a special interview session of “Art Matters”, a program hosted by a local public access channels. The host of Art Matters is Wayne Quackenbush, a good friend who is the proprietor of Annex Comics in Newport, and the president of the Portsmouth Art Guild. As Wayne was also putting my artwork on display in his shop windows, he asked if I might like to speak on his show about my work and process. I was quite honored to participate, and rather enjoyed the experience!

The interview is now up on YouTube, where the second half of the program features artist and yoga instructor Elizabeth Hughes .

Warwick Center for the Arts in JEOPARDY?

The other morning, I received an alarming note that the Mayor of Warwick is considering the prospect of evicting the Warwick Center for the Arts from their longtime home in order to convert the historic Kentish Armory Building into a municipal office, as according to this article in the Warwick Beacon. Suffice it to say, I do not believe that this is a well considered plan.

The WCOA has long been a vital center of arts and culture . Yesterday, I wrote this letter to Mayor Solomon. I am hoping that my input, along with may others , may help him to find an alternative plan that preserves the WCOA in their historic home.

_____________________________________________________________

Dear Mayor Solomon,


My name is Krzysztof Mathews. I am a resident of Warwick, and I am writing to you out of concern for the proposed plans to evict the Warwick Center for the Arts from their home at the historic Kentish Armory building.

The Warwick Center for the Arts plays a vital role for the arts here in Rhode Island. Situated between Wickford and Providence, it provides an excellent space and serves a wide cross section of the arts community. For the youngest emerging artists, the WCOA has consistently offered a robust selection of classes. This is the foundation that can help young people to begin a lifelong appreciation of the arts and their own developing skills and enjoyment of the practice of art. The main gallery is a beautiful space that has been lovingly developed over years of hard work and careful remodeling to create an accessible exhibition venue that has hosted a truly wide and diverse series of shows in every media, and in a substantial range of subjects and themes. Over many years, arts groups such as the SENE Film festival, the Art League Rhode Island, 19 on Paper, the University of Rhode Island Department of Art and Art History, and RISCA have all shared their art, workshops, and events in this space.

And let us also not forget that the WCOA has been a place that offers a location for music and live performance including a local comedy improv group. To find an arts venue that offers all of these benefits to the public is an increasingly rare thing!


I fear that if the WCOA is forced to evict their space, they may well find themselves without a location that allows them to provide the public and the arts community with these opportunities and services, and that would be a serious loss.

Respectfully,

Krzysztof Mathews
158 Sand Pond Road
Warwick Rhode Island

Huge thanks to my friend Verna Valencia!

Verna Valencia: artwork photographed at her parents’ house.

Collage on paper (2018) 14 ¼ x 15 ½ in.




This past year, I was visited by a good friend who I knew from my days back as a RISD undergraduate. Verna Valencia is a skilled and dedicated painter and collage artist who regularly travels to visit and report on artists, museums and galleries. I was incredibly honored that she chose to visit my studio and create an in depth profile of my art and working process. This article is now live on her web site!



The Fascinating Work of Sculptor Krzysztof Mathews

I owe her my deepest gratitude for this wonderful attention, and I hope that in turn folks will take the time to visit ( and perhaps even find a home for) some of her marvelous artwork online!


https://vernavalencia.com/




A few updates for the first of the year- 2019!

A good but packed holiday season finally comes to an end. With it, here are a few developments I was busy with during November and December, as the semester came to a close..

Juror for the Warwick Center for the Arts

I was honored to serve as the juror for the show “Brave New World” a showcase of digital art on display at the Warwick Center for the Arts. I was quite impressed by the variety and quality of the work submitted!

As juror, I had one of my artworks on display as well- my digital print “Supercharge”

Awarded Honorable Mention at the Winter’s Eve juried show

One of the annual events that artists in the area have come to look forward to is the annual “Winter’s Eve” show hosted by the Friends of the East Greenwich Library. This year, I was pleasantly surprised to earn the award of Honorable Mention for my digital print “Finally Found it!”


So all in all, a very good season. I now look forward to the various exhibitions taking place in the coming year!