Throughout his early career, Franz has developed a captivating style of organic representation where viewpoints in his paintings are refracted, obscured, and through this brought closer to life. Directly confronting the complexity of contemporary existence, he approaches the medium of painting as a venture in witnessing and recording his time.
In his paintings, muted earth tones are contrasted with shadowy outlines and full primary hues that comprise invented architectural spaces or uncanny perspectives. The pulling and pushing tension within his brushstrokes captures the sensation of heavy, enlarged forms giving way to more delicate arrangements, infused with the imbalanced weight and proportions one would find in a dream.
Franz is careful to distance the viewer’s perspective from the interior of his paintings. He describes this process as “clinging to the inherent depth and secret of things.” Buried within his images the viewer searches for the face of a figure or the contours of the skyline. Throughout these scenes, the motif of collective longing is projected into a broader social context, as are suggestions of detachment, inaction, and rebelliousness.
Matthias Franz graduated from the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna in 2019, where he was a student of Daniel Richter. Franz participated in the group exhibition at GRIMM New York, Condition Humaine, in December 2021. The artist’s first solo exhibition with GRIMM, Salon des Nutzlosen, will take place at the gallery’s New York location in June of 2022.
Franz’s work can be found in The Rachofsky Collection, Dallas; De Heus-Zomer Collection, Barneveld; THE EKARD COLLECTION; The Franks-Suss Collection, London; Green Family Art Foundation, Dallas; Kunstmuseum, The Hague; The He Art Museum, Foshan; and The Roberts Institute of Art, London.
[excerpted from GRIMM website: www.grimmgallery.com]