Matt Greene: Surrender!
Text by Benjamin Weissman, Trinie Dalton.
The Los Angeles-based artist Matt Greene is becoming known for his ethereal landscapes of fleshy fungi and bushy bombshells, paintings that explore his favorite shelves in the library: vintage pornography, fairy tales, horticulture, horror films, nineteenth-century Symbolist art, and, of course, the history of Modernism. Greene's canvases unite those disparate and sometimes deliberately kitschy interests--and the weighty themes of gender, sexuality and epistemology that accompany them--in his distinctly serious and polished practice, creating a compelling tension between the two aesthetics. In this case, that tension is a bit higher than usual, as the artist shifts his attention from vintage to contemporary pornography. This new suite of paintings, the heart of his recent first solo show at Deitch Projects, is inspired by video erotica and uses its screen images to address highbrow concerns such as surface, color and space.