press release

Thousands of photographs cut out of newspapers and erased of their documentary clarity take on a haze of associations in Matt Bryans' installations. This new work will be his first multiple wall installation and the first to be made with colour newspaper. Using simply a pencil eraser Bryans converts the world's news into a collage that threatens to spread like algae, and speaks more pictorially, of shifts in tone and colour, than of famine or murder or sporting victory. He is interested in the media's tendency to flatten an individual's experience, and in turn figurative representation is loosened into suggestive atmosphere.

Yet Bryans is not simply proposing a cynical message. His walls are smothered in painterly swatches of newsprint, the time-consuming nature of Bryans' process is like that of a cultural archaeologist or a Beat writer doggedly experiencing everything possible to assimilate it into something new. Like Burroughs' infamous overtyping of pages and pages of a novel, there is a sense of the intoxicating potential of imagery.

Also exhibited is an installation of small wooden sculptures, animated by their naturally gnarled form and knotty eyes, the gradually worn down core from old Christmas trees. Nothing ever dies, it just changes shape, and here, again, leftovers are transformed through repetitive gestures and erasures into hollow abstractions.

In 2005 Matt Bryans participated in several group shows; Recent Acquisitions at the Museum of Contemporary Art Los Angeles, Pin-up at Tate Modern and Looking at Words at Andrea Rosen Gallery, New York. Recent solo shows include Picture This! at MMD (Museum Dhondt-Dhaenens) in Belgium, Matt Bryans at Martin van Zomeren, Amsterdam and a large scale commission for Salon 94 in New York.

Matt Bryans was born in Croydon in 1977 and lives and works in London.

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Matt Bryans