A Woman Defined

Art & Culture by Mahvash Mossaed

Exhibition: Demossa Gallery Presents Matthew Anthony Stokes, October 20, 2013 – January 19, 2014

October 19, 2013

To understand Matthew Anthony Stokes’s paintings, we have to put down the heavy load of anything of slight pretentiousness or of slight superficiality that we were ever conditioned to carry, like a heavy unnecessary burden. We then have to take a deep breath, undo and untangle all our thoughts, and throw away everything learned in order for us be in the moment and become spacious enough so that we can step into Stokes’s world and into the world of his paintings.

He paints not searching for our approval and not trying to impress us. His work is refreshingly effortless, easy, and uncomplicated, with a lot of black and white and just a splash of red. Looking at Matthew Anthony Stokes’s art is like looking through a container of very clear water. When I look at his paintings, I see a certain sense of weightlessness and lightness, as though while painting, Stokes had his palms open so that everything could float softly and easily. It is as though while painting, he was not grabing or squeezing at all at his subject matter and his colors, but ever so gently, let the layers of paint float and find their way on and around his canvas without any unnecessary interruption. In this way, he has given his art permission to be free and authentic, almost as though he is sitting back as a spectator, watching it all happen in the here and now – all in the magic of moment.

– Mahvash Mossaed


Matthew Anthony Stokes

“I think the architectural phrase ‘truth to materials’ seems to inform the way I paint. In fact, playing with materials may be all I do – and is partly the reason why I paint. I like accidents – when they happen just right so that they seem wonderful and correct – so it’s a little like fishing perhaps. I like simple materials: Indian ink, a limited selection of paints, paper, cardboard, canvas, loose cloth. I find the simplest materials – sometimes found in the street – the more amazing. They seem to want to look wonderful by their absolute nature. Since going down this road some years ago, it’s as though these humble materials encourage me to draw in a fresh response to nature in a direct, primal and visceral way.”

Matthew Anthony Stokes is an English artist currently living and working in Los Angeles. He attended Greenwich University and, later on, University of Cambridge in London, England to become an architect. His sculptures, films and paintings have been exhibited extensively throughout Europe and the United States. Amongst many other galleries, his work as been featured at the Klowden Mann Gallery in Santa Monica, California; the Museum of Modern Art (SMAK) in Ghent; and the Provincial Museum of Art in Kortrijk, Belgium. His work is expressionistic and raw – inspired by a love of wilderness, by tribal, ‘primitive’ and ancient arts, expressionistic and punk art, folk art – yet is rooted in a lifelong study since childhood of drawing, painting and of classical art history.

Exhibition Details

 See the online exhibition at Demossa Gallery
October 20, 2013 – January 19, 2014

For inquiries regarding the artist and his work, such as pricing and availability, please send an email to art@demossagallery.com.

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Posted in Art Reviews, Demossa Gallery, Exhibitions & Events, Reviews |

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