Chason Matthams

Advances, None Miraculous

August 11 - September 13, 2015


Thierry-Goldberg Gallery is pleased to present Advances, None Miraculous, the first New York solo exhibition of Chason Matthams. The show will be up from August 11th until September 13th with a closing reception on Wednesday, September 9th from 6 to 8pm.

Matthams constructs non-linear narratives by appropriating and making references to numerous art historical and pop culture imagery, mostly found online, where there is no hierarchy between styles, ways of rendering, time periods, or whether the authors are classified as artist, illustrator, designer, or otherwise.

One way to look at this series of paintings, Matthams says about his work, is as a mind going into anxious overdrive trying to construct a narrative out of all the disparate information and random juxtapositions one is confronted with daily. I can't help but think of the fractured progression of my paintings as the way I experience life itself, open and almost chaotic in the moment but falling into a narrative over time. I was first taken with this way of thinking through the television writer David Milch, on his audio commentary for his HBO show "John from Cincinnati" (2007),

We live with fragmented sensibilities. Moment to moment our stream of consciousness is so constantly modified by whatever waves of experience come over it from the outside. We sustain the illusion of a continuing coherent sensibility. We are in a modulated flux between the input of the outside and which of our senses we are using to assign meaning to that input, and under those circumstances the idea of having a coherent story, that need to embrace that illusion, is just one of the arbitrary ways we kid ourselves that things make sense.

Pragmatism is at the basis of the work, Matthams continues, I honestly don’t know if I am considering this right now because David Milch is an admirer of the American philosopher and psychologist William James or because this summer Pixar’s “Inside Out” affected me more than anything else. The movie illustrated the abstract thought section of the brain as a potentially hazardous zone, a place where the characters lose sight of who they are and how they function in day-to-day life. They start interacting with each other and the world not through emotional truths but through ideas and concepts that then become so abstracted it’s impossible for them to function in reality.

Chason Matthams (b. 1981, Miami, FL) currently lives and works in New York, NY. He holds an MFA and a BFA from New York University. Matthams has previously exhibited at Tyler Wood Gallery, San Francisco, CA; 80WSE Gallery, New York, NY; Interstate Projects, Brooklyn, NY; Launch F18, New York, NY; and at Frédéric de Goldschmidt, Brussels, Belgium.