Matthew Hunt is a Perth based artist who graduated from Curtin University in 1995 with honours, after completing a graphic design course at the Perth Technical College in 1987.
He has exhibited extensively since 1995, group shows include Hatched, Director’s Choice [selected by the Art Gallery of Western Australia’s Director Alan Dodge in 1999], Do it [as part of the Perth International Arts Festival in 2001], Flux [2003 at Lawrence Wilson Art Gallery], and Mix Tape at the Art Gallery of WA in 2005.
Matthew has held 12 solo exhibitions, including last year’s Backwater at the Holmes a Court Gallery, with the book launch of a major monograph of the same name. During 2002 to 2004 Matthew travelled overseas, undertaking research and residencies that resulted in exhibitions in New Zealand, Japan, Hong Kong and Switzerland. His artworks have been acquired by the Art Gallery of Western Australia, Artbank and Curtin University.
Cause I see the light surrounding you… includes an installation of ‘meteors’, video and text works. Combined they are evidence of the myriad of stimuli and discord that constitute contemporary life. Filtered, they become fragments of memory, fleeting moments, chance encounters, coincidences, misinterpretations, a riff of music repeating in your head, a scent or noise that recalls the past, an amateur video of a falling meteorite. They all confirm, ‘it happened, I was there.’ The title of this exhibition is no exception.
Matthew explained, “A piece of paper blows into the front yard. On it is a hand written sentence, surrounded by a loose cloud design, or a speech bubble. There is some understated coloured pencil work and a couple of love hearts. I think it is written by a woman, it has a softness to it, Cause I See the Light Surrounding You, So Don’t Be Afraid. I am intrigued and touched by this statement. I wonder why this has come to me... Months later I am telling the story to a friend who immediately identifies the statement as a lyric. To my disappointment I know the song and the band and I know where the piece of paper came from - the Karaoke club across the road. But things have moved on, the sentence has transformed for me. It has formed links with other aspects of my art and life and I become glad again that it blew into my yard”.
So too, the text works by Matthew Hunt in this exhibition confirm that something exists beyond the words. They are not merely the remnants of our rapid paced, complicated age, they are pointers to memories, significant moments. Hand-cut into scraperboard, they defy technological advances of print reproduction, and their typographical design enhances the meaning of the words. Time has been invested into recapturing and puzzling over the meanings and memories evoked.
Matthew’s art is constantly fluid and personal, connecting ideas, referencing history, politics and society as he attempts to position himself in the world: “I guess my ideas build up, it’s an accumulation thing. I follow leads, I get distracted, forget, misread or mishear; I collect, I get fascinated for no particular reason and things catch my eye. They tend to be things which are overlooked, or on the periphery, or too close… For me, there’s a sense of loss, of the temporal nature of experience and a realisation about how quickly the moment of discovery moves on.”
Meanings often remain slippery and elusive, they are evidence of his life in all its complexity and do not allow simple readings. Yet within the work’s secret history, there is an invitation for the viewer to share in the wonder and participate in life’s shared experiences.
Matthew noted, “This is really a symbiotic relationship; my work is not above the audience, but a part of them.” [Backwater, interview with Robert Cook, p.81 & 8]
Matthew’s book, Backwater, is for sale in the gallery.
This page is an archived record of this exhibition. Prices are valid for the year of exhibition only.
Please contact the gallery or check the stockroom to confirm current availability and prices.
All artwork reproductions are © the artist. Images may not be used without permission from turner galleries and the artist.
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