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Matthew Monahan creates striking sculptures that engage with the formal challenges of figuration in drawing and sculpture while addressing political, personal and art histories. His elaborate compositions are created from drawings and fragments of former smaller works made from such disparate materials as floral foam, beeswax, glitter, pins, Styrofoam, glass and drywall that he assembles into freestanding sculptures. Handcrafted characters including warriors, saints, slain heroes and demons appear simultaneously as icons and iconoclasts within the ambiguous narrative to which Monahan's work alludes. Human emotions ranging from jubilation to anguish are depicted in Monahan's characters, each seemingly frozen in time and part of an unidentifiable, ahistorical epoch. Not driven by an interest in creating a perfected or pristine object, the works are as much representations of Monahan's thought process as they are finished sculptures. This publication brings together work from the past 10 years upon the occasion of Monahan's debut solo museum exhibition.
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