Matthew Bainbridge

Matthew Bainbridge

This week we meet Glasgow based painter Matthew Bainbridge, protective eyewear may be required!

"Essentially a parody of art’s own intelligibility, my work aims to exist in oscillation between looking profound and being dumb; wangling the promise of intellectual validation as a carrot on a string, I urge spectators of my work to exert themselves in getting it. I appropriate the most recognisable gestures from the canon of artistic painting, jarring them together to create a lexical jargon of ideals suspended within fictional depth."

"By simultaneously allowing fragments of popular or lowbrow cultures to permeate my work I amplify the confusing timbre of its voice, further augmented by material choices designed specifically to harass and exploit the tropes of conventional painting orthodoxies. The idea is to assess the exclusivity of painted language, discovering to what extent the necessity of expert knowledge is required in understanding contemporary painting practices."

Working Process

"My work often begins as a collection of words or phrases I find myself fixated upon, these can be any manner of things such as sentences or opinions gleaned from theory texts, lyrics from songs, things I’ve overheard in conversation or even seen scrawled in some graffiti; I seem to subconsciously separate these words entirely from their original contexts and consider them as entities in their own right, repeating them out loud and writing them over and over again to fully understand their physicality away from their definitions and wider connotations." 

"I then subjugate this into a sort of accumulative lexicon of gestures that go on to form the make up of my work. In manipulating these marks I consider the gravitas of previous painting histories, the art historical prestige embedded in a gesture executed in a certain manner; by replicating and then jarring together these specific painted languages I hope to initiate a sort of neutralising stalemate, a sense of nothingness in excess."

"This nothingness is something I always think about when painting, in both an intellectual and immediate sense; when a painting is laden with thick impasto we automatically assume art whereas sparseness appears to yield a different response, in working these oppositional surfaces into the same painting these inherent prejudices are brought to light. In terms of the physical act of painting itself I like big brushes and lurid colour. I tend to avoid painting with neutral and earth tones all together as I think the superficiality of an unnatural, plastic palette speaks more truly of my pop-culture influences. I usually decide on a basic palette of three or four colours to begin with, the rest is largely intuition."

To see more of Matthew's work visit www.matthewbainbridge.com

Top 5: Glasgow International 2016

Top 5: Glasgow International 2016

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