Tony Matelli's Minimalist Install @ Real Estate Fine Art in NYC
Real Estate Fine Art in NYC is currently hosting a stark showcase by Tony Matelli, whose mind-boggling sculptural work we've featured on a couple of occasions in the past. Taking into account how much a minimal intervention or artistic gesture can activate the space around the viewer, the show consists of only two plant sculptures and one wall piece.
At first glance, the works on view look like nothing more than two weeds and a dirty mirror in an empty room. And while that is completely true as far as visual representation goes, it's artist's choice and use of materials, as well as the creative process behind it, that changes the entire perspective of the works and the space around it. The fact that the plants are made from bronze and the wall piece is enamel on a mirror, activates the room in a new light and makes the viewer question reality in an entirely different way. Matelli's painstaking way of recreating reality in classic materials is what makes his work stand out and stop the viewer in their tracks. It's the clash between what we recognize as a familiar plant and the notion that we're looking at a sculptural bronze piece, that creates a paradox which instantly extends from the art piece onto its surrounding. The way the works are installed and naturally blended into space, only accents this unique effect. —Sasha Bogojev