WorkUntitled

Unedited conversations between artist in a productive critique  discovering  thesis and processes behind the work.

FOLLOW US @WORKUNTITLED_MAG

CONVERSATIONS

MAGAZINES

ARTISTS

INFO

CONTACT

PROFIT SHARES

Conversation between Matthew Ryan Herget and Olivia Ramos.

 

Matthew Ryan Herget

Thank You Kindly, 2016

Oil and Spray Paint on Canvas

30 x 48 in.

HERGET:  Hellooooo

 

RAMOS:  Hi Matthew

 

thank you for joining us again

 

i am excited to catch up

 

Hell yeah I've been pumped for this

 

Thanks for having me again : )

 

you recently had a show in NY

 

at Context Art

 

and your paintings have truly evolved

 

Yes ma'am with Mugello Contemporary

 

Yeah it's been kinda crazy in my studio

 

haha

 

i love the simplicity and intensity of "thank you kindly"

 

and the playfulness of "pure power don't power trip"

 

Yes! Thank you. Those are the last two pieces that were completed for the show.

 

pure power don't power trip is one of my favorite pieces ever ever ever

 

i can see it in the piece

 

now

 

i wanted to discuss two other pieces because i think they speak about a larger movement or trend that makes me very curious

 

"positive thought impulse"

 

Matthew Ryan Herget

Positive Thought Impulses, 2016

Oil, Spray Paint, and Graphite on Canvas

36 x 24 in.

 

 

mhmmmmm

 

there's a fairly simple story regarding that

 

When I first saw Banksy do that back when I was in high school, I was blown away. I love the visual of taking something that you know was done with great control and reserve (like a simple flower or landscape painting) and then giving it your own touch. I love the metaphor of it all, and aesthetically, it's one of my favorite things actually.

 

I had a float tank session the other week and basically it told me to stop being so afraid to play more where deep down you really want to play, so I said fuck it, I gotta do this how I would want it done

 

yes - i see that - and i see it also in the work of Matty Mo and locally in Miami, in the work of Loriel Beltran

 

and I'm sure there are others but personally I had not seen this before.

 

Matty dips existing paintings in paint and calls it his own and I find that fascinating.

 

do you feel like these paintings over existing paintings are yours?

 

Ha it's so funny that we're in this conversation already

 

I've been talking about this all week

 

And have lost friends over it lolllllll

 

haha

 

you wont' loose me over it

 

i dont' have an opinion one way or another

 

i'm just curious

 

Maybe this is a better way to answer. I don't have the attachment to them that I have to something that I started from start to finish

 

I don't love it any less though

 

A lot of people have done it. It's not really a new thing but I like the metaphor of it because basically every painting is a new idea over an older idea to simplify it

 

Early cave painters took God's creations and put their own spin on them ha

 

What's the difference between doing it literally with an old painting and painting over it

 

Check out Oliver Jeffers. He's been doing that stuff forever

 

so how would you feel if i took one of your paintings

 

and dipped it in paint

 

and sold it at a higher price

 

As long as you didn't steal it out of my studio I would honestly have a humble laugh over it

 

I'm not quite sure though but Oliver Jeffers may paint everything from the beginning. Not sure

 

Ah yeah he does for sure

 

maybe Matty Mo does as well

 

Nah

 

no?

 

how do you know?

 

Well I know him personally

 

I don't think it's relevant anymore though as much as I wish it to be. I personally am more on the romantic side of doing everything myself but artists these days just need ideas lol

 

in a way it is as if the internet is coming out of the screen and into the canvas

 

I personally am in love with the idea of the artist really pounding it out in their studio to find something but I'm not sure if that's as valued anymore as simply the finished product

 

well value can be measured in many ways

 

there is a value as in - someone buys it

 

and then there is historical value as in it makes a dent in the trajectory of art

 

I have this conversation with myself all the time

 

Yeah.. but I feel like the trajectory now is just figuring out how to do something different

 

"We know EVERYTHING therefore we must move on."

 

Somethings are forever perfect how they are though. I think art history, celebrity, social media, and money are all too clumped together so each one is influenced so dramatically by one another

 

art is not about doing something different

 

it is about doing something relevant

 

Hmmm but is relevancy and new like the chicken and egg.

 

Which one comes first?

 

relevant is always new

 

Hmmm

 

because that which is - or reality - is always changing

 

so if you stay relevant you stay new

 

So it's all just a treadmill to no where

 

or to the unknown

 

do you find value in definitions?

 

to you have to know where you are going as much as where you are?

 

I like abstract and big pictures. I think the moment we define things, we remove it's magic, and we're just making it humanesque based on our small understanding of what everything really is

 

I always make sure that I know where I am but I rarely need to know where I'm going

 

i'm with you there

 

I have this conversation with myself almost everyday

 

well i'm glad we are getting it on paper

 

If I'm honest with myself, I find so much value in finding something new within me, by using tried and true techniques

 

well that's also a way to stay relevant

 

I feel like because it's 2016 doesn't mean we have to ditch the classic shit but spun in new ways

 

well creating hype around something doesn't make it relevant

 

I feel like that's what everything is though

 

not everything - only 90%

 

There's so much good shit that falls in the cracks but the ones who are the biggest hype men find a way to be relevant

 

are they relevant

 

or just hyped

 

To many many people

 

relevant has a component of eternity

 

I think very few people know what's truly relevant to eternity

 

well Matthew - who are you painting for?

 

Most people have no idea that we're all on a rock flying through space and most of the stuff we argue over even matters to the relevancy of all that

 

Idk, I know it sounds dramatic but I feel like when I paint and when I push through personal boundaries and blockages it's kind of like an offering to the universe

 

I really just want to be in line with that feeling and stay there

 

I'm not trying to outwit anyone or "get there first"

 

I don't want you to feel defeated by the hype or the surface cleverness that seems to get attention

 

because no great artist ever did it for anyone else but themselves

 

It gets scary sometimes to be honest

 

Sometimes I'm like fuck man..... I know what will sell easily but I also know what drives me from the deepest place in me and they're not always the same thing

 

i think that's up to you

 

It's becoming easier and easier to be recognized as an artist because of social media

 

Sometimes it feels like a mad grab to coming out with the next coolest picture on instagram

 

it gets exhausting to play that game

 

So that can potentially create a space that completely influences the direction of art because of the immediacy of "Oh I like that" or "I'm not sure what that is so I'm not going to like it." Now if someone is very aware of that, it can be very tempting to just keep up with that and play the game

 

Therefore what becomes relevant in art isn't necessarily dictated by the artist

 

Not nearly as much as they may think

 

well in that case you are giving away your power

 

yeah but this world is filled with people who have given away all power

 

yup - 90%

 

it's very tempting

 

its easy

 

you think you have power when you grow a following like that

 

but it's not real

 

i don't known

 

i think it is powerful

 

it's powerful enough to take away your power

 

The trouble is that there is no right or wrong answer, fundamentally

 

well if you happiness and success are contingent on followers

 

Art people talk about "a brand" a lot. That scares the shit out of me

 

Everyones wants to be a brand

 

the 90%

 

Yeah but now we're all brain washed by followers. We think who is being followed is relevant. All these motherfuckers are scheming and plotting how to build this following. it's not magic. Myself included.

 

lol

 

I just hope to bring some magic to the table as this following is being created