Matthew Sprung

Region: MFA Annual


City / State: New York, NY

Since beginning to teach myself how to paint in 2016, and following my graduation from the Painting and Drawing MFA program at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago in 2021, my practice has taught me three key lessons: (1) it takes the most difficult work to make something seem simple; (2) the object is trying to feel and understand every emotion as you work through them; and (3) there is always more to learn.

As the realities of political extremism, climate change, and inequality become starker and more bleak, the more I believe we need to reach out and support each other. This can happen with big actions but also with small ones, like simply occupying the same space as someone who needs to not be alone. The spaces I’ve begun to seek out and construct in my larger landscape and interior paintings attempt to reflect the tensions and harmonious connections found in both empty and populated places as we all continue to strive to help one another get through these trying times.