Matt Bollinger

  • 12.09.2011 - 11.11.2011|

Matt Bollinger started by making luminous black and white drawings executed in graphite. These works can be as large as 60 x 72 inches; some are larger still almost becoming installations---about midnight Saturday is almost 17 feet long. His graphites have the rare quality of conveying a chromatic sense that is achieved only by the great colorists: Matisse or Bonnard or more recently Hockney. In Matt Bollinger’s recent collages, color invades the paper---paper that is painted, torn, cut, and finally glued and pieced together to produce, with almost staggering precision, a 3D image which is far from hyper-realistic. The materiality of the paper is palpable; the tears and cut-outs remain visible, resulting in the amplification, too, of the color. Drawing and collage combine in Bollinger’s work in the implementation of a vision that suggests the cinematographic sequence shot. He elaborates the script and operates the camera. Starting with his own memories as a child in Kansas City, he depicts situations that proclaim truthfulness. They are more or less narrative, peopled with pre-teens, or teenagers in postures emphasized by the lighting. In the most painstaking way possible, Bollinger gives light an essential role in the construction of space and memory. From black and white to color, the point of view is the same. The dazzle of headlights, cones of illumination produced by street lamps, the outline of a door or a window, open onto the night. In a peripheral urban area one sees the immensity of the sky, and in a face there is the interrogation of the gaze. All of these details, sometimes infinitesimal, and always intimate, are key elements of memory. But they are not intended to act as a nostalgic “reconstitution” of Matt Bollinger’s life. He uses them, rather, to activate the development of a mental space in which, as in dreams, feelings of unease and strangeness are dominant. – Bernard Zürcher

A catalog will be published. Essay by David Humphrey