Tying Ribbons On All The Things I’m Thankful For
This painting depicts a cowboy in his natural element, outside and under the stars. The wild coyote in the background serves as a talisman.
After substantial commercial success and subsequent disenchantment with the art world, Matt Momchilov took nearly a decade’s hiatus from his art practice. This painting is part of a new body of work that is an experiment in unlearning. The artist's new compositions are an inquiry into a kind of creative sustenance that champions pleasure and play, spontaneity and imperfection, curiosity and surprise. The resulting paintings focus on joy and stand apart from a medium inundated—and often strangled by—rigor. They are portraits of tender and effusive characters drawn from the mall, the spirit world and the mythical American West. Though masterful in technique and stroke, these figures are awkward but riveting; they arrive in a raw palette of ketchup reds and sandstone grays, with contrasting pops and strips of jewel tones and raggedy patterns. The unfinished nature of Momchilov's canvases are a giant middle finger to a status quo who worships the bottom line, and to a past self whose inner critic held court. Opting for a soft grip over a heavy hand, Momchilov enters another dimension when he’s painting. The artist chooses to discover, not invent, saying of his characters: “I let them make me laugh. I let them tell me what’s next.”
Matt Momchilov’s paintings are tender and effusive portraits of characters drawn from diverse walks of life—including the mall, the spirit world and the mythical American West. Opting for a soft grip over a heavy hand, the artist’ work depicts awkward but riveting figures in a raw palette contrasted with jewel tones and raggedy patterns. The unfinished nature of Momchilov’s compositions keep them in a constant state of becoming, while simultaneously serving as a giant middle finger to the marketplace status quo and its worship of the bottom line.