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2021 - Pretty Pictures as Altered Realism

The series, Pretty Pictures was born from an observation made visiting a variety of art fairs and the work visible on social media. The art world seems to be focused on altered realities - the depiction of reality stylistically and fantastic - I call it Altered Realism - an updated version of Surrealism. Arguably, Surrealism has never stopped being popular, but the Surrealist work of today is more focused on dream states and less interested in chance and divination. The Altered Realists of today are heavily influenced by Pop Art, Contemporary Pop Culture and the Superflat movement. Pretty Pictures is my contribution to the Altered Realism of the art World. The paintings in this series are informed by art history, ancient cultures, pop culture, and my own brand of humor.

2021 - Pretty Pictures

 

Jason's Minyans, 40 x 40 cm

Jason's Minyans is a study for a larger painting, #Medea which is based on the Greek tragedy, Medea. In the play, Jason visits the homeland of Medea aboard the ship, Argo. The sailors are referred to as Argonauts, but the people from whom the sailors descend are called, Minyans. In the tragedy, Medea finds her authority greatly diminished by Jason as he and his Minyans wreak havoc in their search for the Golden Fleece. In the modern retelling of the story by the painting, #Medea, the dogs represent Jason's Minyans.

The painting is made from artist-made acrylic on clayboard. I mix my paint to be unusually vivid and matte in appearance. This painting showcases years of experimentation with different pigment and medium combinations. I try to make paint that adsorbs to the quality of a flower pedal with that velvety, pure color that seems to have depth. This painting is stylishly edge framed in dark afromosia wood.

Contact matt@mjfdesign.net for Pricing.

Matthew J Frock Art


2021 - Pretty Pictures

 

Set Free, 120 x 100 cm

Set Free was inspired by a combination of influences. The image itself is derived from the Velvet Undergrounds, Lou Reed lyric from the song, Set Free. The full lyric is, "I saw my head laughing, rolling on the ground, and now - I'm set free!" Like many of Reed's lyrics, the song conjures imagery of medieval European culture within a pop culture context. Dan Carlin's Hardcore History episode, "Painfotainment" provides another view through the window of inspiration for this painting. In the episode he explains how a visit to the Medieval town squares guillotine beheading was like attending a modern day sporting event. Finally, James Jean and the Superflat movement inspired this work.

The painting is made from artist-made acrylic on stretched linen. I mix my paint to be unusually vivid and matte in appearance. This painting showcases years of experimentation with different pigment and medium combinations. I try to make paint that adsorbs to the quality of a flower pedal with that velvety, pure color that seems to have depth. This painting is gallery wrapped on 4cm thick stretchers. It doesn't need a frame to have good presence on the wall.

Contact matt@mjfdesign.net for Pricing.

Matthew J Frock Art


2021 - Pretty Pictures

 

#Medea, no. 1, 40 x 60 cm

When I set out to make #Medea, I was inspired to work with ancient myths and art history icons within a contemporary visual theater. As the composition developed it became imbued with details from media I was absorbing at the time. I thought it would be interesting to portray a female figure as an anti-heroine in an unjust World where she was given no other option than to be subservient. I admired the tenacity of a woman who would reach so far into the darkness to exercise the last bit of power she had available. She would murder her son to strip her treacherous husband and king of his heir.

As I come to the end of developing this composition, I realize the above is all fine and good, but it isn't what this painting is about. It isn't about: obscure versions of the Jason and the Argonauts myth where Medea eats her sons; or the story I heard Jack Kornfield tell on his podcast where the Goddess, Shiva gives birth to children, then eats them to teach her student a hard lesson; it isn't about a ludicrous man-figure desperately trying to control his environment as he senselessly burns it all to the ground; and it isn't about the irony of cute puppies who are being raised to become murderous guard-servants.

#Medea is about fatherhood, marriage and all the fears that go with those changes in life. Primarily, Euripides play, Medea, based on the myth, Jason and the Argonauts is about betrayal. What a demon it is. The fear of: being in love with and betrothed to someone who doesn't feel the same or even respect you; the fear of bringing children into a World where there is so much injustice; and the fear and unthinkable act of a parent turning on their children. #Medea is an illustration of what lies in the darkest cave in the deepest recesses of my mind. I had no idea I was headed there. Welcome to my cave of darkness. Please turn off the light on your way out.

Contact matt@mjfdesign.net for Pricing.

Matthew J Frock Art



2021 - Pretty Pictures

 

Requiem for Pisces, 40 x 60 cm

Requiem for Pisces is an imagined funeral procession for the previous age. The fish is escorted downstream by the stars, Sun and Moon while a girl bends down to watch them pass. The fish travels with his baggage in hopes that Aquarius will have a fresh start. The Aquarius constellation sits front and center in the sky. The boat design and symbolism are inspired by Mayan imagery. This painting is in celebration of the dawning of the age of Aquarius.

The painting is made from artist-made acrylic on clayboard. I mix my paint to be unusually vivid and matte in appearance. This painting showcases years of experimentation with different pigment and medium combinations. I try to make paint that adsorbs to the quality of a flower pedal with that velvety, pure color that seems to have depth. This painting is stylishly edge framed in dark afromosia wood.

Contact matt@mjfdesign.net for Pricing.

Matthew J Frock Art



2021 - Pretty Pictures

 

Pan and the Virgin, 100 x 90 cm

This image was created from a photograph I made of a sculpture inside the Vatican. There are so many images like this in the Vatican that make me think of how we see ourselves through the lens of history. They remind me that we are mostly ignorant to our ancestors true thinking, and that we project today's values onto the images of an incomprehensible past. Because we don't understand the past, human history, and our origins, we can't see we truly know who we are. This image of Pan with a young man in a cape is so strange to me, I don't know what it is. Is it religious or cultural or maybe both? Is it some sort of softcore ancient pornography or conversation piece? Some of this information may be available in the Vatican archives, but in the end it would probably dull it down. I enjoy finding the stories I see in them and find it amusing to wonder who made it, for whom, and for what purpose. The World of history, no matter who tells the story is a work of fantasy.

Contact matt@mjfdesign.net for Pricing.

Matthew J Frock Art



 

2020 White Series

2020 Abstract Landscapes

2019 Abstract Landscapes

 

 

 

 

 

Matthew J. Frock. MJFdesign Gallery.

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Contact: matt@mjfdesign.net