Reviewer: Kristine Gotham
Venue: Saginaw Art Museum
Stand in front of one of Matt Lewis’ painting from his current exhibit Time Being and you are immediately pulled inside. Matt’s paintings are curved in nature, drawing the viewer into a world that swirls around with no edges. His use of color, primarily blues, browns and blacks, and the curved swirling shapes bring to mind rolling, curling seas, the view out of a cave opening into the vastness of nature, or a dark night sky with just the faintest of moonlight shining. The viewer is invited to stop and reflect, deciding for themselves what to focus on as there is no prevailing image in the art. The one exception to this being painting M.E. 10. This painting is of a landscape, with golden lit mountains in the background, a calm blue sea and trees rising up from the dark brown earth. The strokes still curve but there is a longer landscape to draw one’s attention.
Lewis uses sweeps of colors, lines to create his images. In his own words, “the line should stand on its own. At times the line should be indistinguishable from the next line…Divide space and create space”.
Lewis’ paintings are not representative of the reality of nature, but rather the nature that we see in our dreams, the fuzzy, unfocused world that lies within our minds when we let them wander. Each piece brings to mind different pictures, but each encourages the viewer to stop, relax, let the colors and shapes wash over and just let the mind see what it will.
This exhibit is not one to be viewed quickly, but rather, with time for reflection and daydreaming. Lewis’ exhibit, Time Being, can be seen at the Saginaw Art Museum from March 29, 2023 to August 12, 2023.