In the context of womens art,, the work of Matthew Monahan would undoubtedly have to be considered guy art. Using drywall, large pieces of glass, bricks, sheets of metal, industrial ratchet straps, riveted bolts, and cast bronze, the Los Angeles-based artist produces massive, hulking figurative sculptures that defy most descriptions.
Infused with his personal mythology and emerging from the rubble of his own creation, they are intended to evoke artifacts from another century, or perhaps a post-apocalyptic vision of art assembled from a nuclear disaster zone. Many of the figures have a Biblical or medieval look. Monahan frequently integrates his forms with museum-style presentations that he fashions from building materials like plasterboard and glass. The current exhibit presents a selection of work from the past eight years, including a number of large sculptures made from folded paper.
Described as resolutely contemporary and yet timeless, the massive conglomerations have been shown in prestigious solo exhibitions at the Contemporary Arts Center, Cincinnati (2011); Institute of Contemporary Art, Philadelphia and Massimo de Carlo, Milan (2010) and Los Angeles Museum of Contemporary Art (2007); as well as in numerous major biennials. This is his first solo exhibition in Canada.