Marc Matchak & Joe W. Speier at Freddy
Expanded Cinematic Universe
8 July – 13 August 2023
Joe W. Speier, Untitled (Self-Portrait/Grinch), 2023, Acrylic and vinyl on canvas, 24 x 18 inches
Marc Matchak, Untitled (Turtle), 2023, Gouache on canvas, 28 x 30 inches
Joe W. Speier, Untitled (Self-Portrait), 2023, Acrylic and vinyl on canvas, 24 x 18 inches
Marc Matchak, Untitled (Sugar Man), 2023, Gouache on canvas, 28 x 30 inches
Joe W.Speier, Untitled (Self-Portrait/Abundance), 2023Acrylic and vinyl on canvas, 16x20inches
Marc Matchak, Untitled (Sun), 2023, Gouache on canvas, 27.5 x 31.5 inches
Marc Matchak, Thugs, 2023, Gouache on canvas, 11 x 16 inches
Freddy is pleased to present Expanded Cinematic Universe, an exhibition of paintings by Marc Matchak and Joe Speier.
Certain characters in Joe Speier’s paintings were at one time real people, in that they are from self-portraits painted by AP Art students. The post-pubescent renderings of a bookish-looking girl and spiky-haired boy approximate a mode of self-reflection faced by anonymous young artists in developmental stages of their lives. There is a sense of youthful melancholy or maybe yearning in some of the faces, however it does not inundate the works with sentimentality. Speier remains thoroughly formally inquisitive. He composes the portraits by way of machine cut vinyl, establishing each subject through intricate systems of acrylic which become contrast to the expressive, washy strokes haunting the background. Out of the canvas ether, faint shapes emit like auras, supplying the figures with a mellow obbligato.
Marc Matchak’s paintings incorporate a process of frottage by which paint is continually applied and buffed away. The resulting images possess an intentional flatness of pigment. Unified by patterns, lines, blobbish pulsing masses and polka dots, itinerant moments are rest stations for the viewer’s attention.What could be a face, an eye, the body of an animal or of a cell are all suspended as parts of an amorphous composition where marks float amongst more determinate shapes. Digressing through various forms, these paintings can be approached from the structures, texture, colors, or as a study in symbology undertaken by the viewer’s consciousness. Matchak’s daily drawing practice has developed a consistent bank of images to pull from. Using these drawings as jumping off points, recurrent characters and forms become clouded by numerous applications and negations of paint. Like Speier, he begins at the figurative and works towards the abstract, pushing the image outward from the representational until it teeters on the edge of recognizability.
It seems what inevitably will become flattened to a symbol is always trying to outrun the parameters of reference.