Meet the man of the hour, Mat Vaughan, celebrated in our latest artist spotlight series. We ask the questions and mat reveals his experience pioneering the art scene.
How have you changed as an artist over the past 2-3 years? What are you making now that you wouldn’t (or couldn’t) have made before?
Since leaving university (BA Honours at the VCA) three years ago, I’ve learned to adapt to working in new spaces. From out the back of a Kombi for a year to my newly built 6m x 6m studio. I’ve found not only does this change the size of the work I’m producing, but it also pushes me in new and exciting directions… creating boundaries for yourself is a great way of taking you to new places.
My Space - 2018, Oil iron pigment and oil stick on canvas, 156 x 196.50 $1800
If this artwork could talk, what would it say?
He pushes and pulls me, taking me to my limits and almost breaking me. When he’s finished, I can rest.
What was the hardest thing to do while making this particular artwork? Is there one section that you struggled to get right?
There is always a struggle in trying not to repeat what you already know works. I have to try hard to use what I know to get a result and also push past the comfortable… sometimes it pays off and sometimes not.
Some people say that every artwork you make is in some way a self-portrait. How is this piece a portrait of you?
I suppose it captures a moment of me gesturally moving across the canvas, as well as my mind at that time trying to solve a visual problem.
Tell us about something you had to learn to become the artist you are now. Can we see this in this artwork?
Hard work and persistence. I’m not sure if it can be seen. Some people see it while others see my work and say “wow, my two years could do that…!” which I also love. Mainly because when I watch my niece and nephew paint, they always seem so free – I love that.