Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Pat's Flags

Land of Liberty
Patrick Matthews might be most well known for his imaginative and colorfully illuminated landscapes, but he also has a sizeable repertoire of flag paintings. It all began shortly after September 11, 2001. Pat was so stirred by the tragic events, that he stopped the landscape he was working on and painted a bold American flag right over it. 

American Spirit
The flag painting became so much more than an homage to the emblem of strength and patriotism that our flag has always stood for – it became a message of hope, resilience and pride. 1000 limited edition, lithograph prints of “American Pride” and “American Pride II” (the second iteration of the work) were signed and numbered by Pat, and proceeds from the sale of the prints were placed in a special fund for the New York City firefighters.  In April 2002, Pat flew to NYC to present the original painting with a check to Engine 4, Ladder Company 54, Battalion 9 – the group of firefighters that suffered the most loss from 9/11.

Canadian Pride
Since then, Pat has done commissions of flags for clients worldwide, including the flags of Italy, Germany and Canada. He has also proudly painted flags from his home state of Arkansas as well as New Mexico, Colorado, California and Texas. Today Pat’s signature flag paintings represent celebration, overcoming hardship, and unshakable pride in the freedom and principles the flags represent. Pat’s flag paintings grace homes, business, judge’s chambers and governors’ collections around the country.

Pat welcomes commissions and his boldly colored flags serve as original and thoughtful gifts for loved-ones. As the holiday season is quickly approaching, consider commissioning a flag painting to represent where you come from or a place you one day hope to go! For commission inquiries, please contact Pat at jpmfineart@comcast.net

Texas Pride

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Patrick Matthews’ Energetic Illumination

Mountain Magic

“Painting outdoors, surrounded by nature, in all seasons, I am energized. I have a sense of inner strength, joy, and peace I feel nowhere else."-Pat
Mountain Magic
The source of light illuminating the center of Mountain Magic (above) helps create a sense of depth and perspective. This light-filled composition has become a signature of Pat’s creative process.

Impressions of Light
Impressions of Light
The painting to the right is on the more abstract end for Pat, although the subject matter is still strong. Light is a key thread running through this wind-blown work – it highlights the fallen, crimson leaves and wisps across the golden ones that are still attached.

Winter’s Glory
In “The Glory of Winter,” Pat turns a horizon of bare-boned aspens into a colorful scene of contrasting elements. The trees’ shadows fill the bottom of the canvas with elongated lines that run parallel to streamers of vibrant orange, yellow, purple and blue. The distant mountains shrouded in cloud-distilled light provide a soft backdrop, which contrasts the angular trees. The whole wintery scene is bursting with color and light. The viewer can tell that this was inspired by a real place, but Pat’s rendition is full of extreme energy and amped up light.

The Glory of Winter
 The Magic of Mountains
Similarly, Pat’s “Mountain Magic” adds incredible depth and light to what would be for some, a standard nature scene. Pat brings the aspens to life by igniting their leaves and bark with bursts of bright color, then softens the distant horizon with cool tones. This painting truly brings a magical quality to the mountains.
These works, and several more, are available at Waxlander Art Gallery & Sculpture Garden in Santa Fe, NM. You can view Pat’s available Waxlander works here
High Mountain Family

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Hunting & Painting Actually Go Together

The Glory of Winter
Why Southwest Art Magazine Took Interest in an American Impressionist Artist from Arkansas

Some extraordinary and inspired artists set up outside in a smock and sit comfortably in the shade for a peaceful afternoon of painting plein air. While this method is great for some, Patrick Matthews does things a bit differently and perhaps that’s why Southwest Art Magazine is drawn to him. Pat is known to load up his four-wheeler with a big yard umbrella and buckets full of gear, head up to the woods, and “get after it,” as he says. “I’ll set up in the woods and paint and I might set my shotgun next to me.”
Once Pat was out on a hunting trip with his buddies and he took off to paint  for a bit. While painting and with his shotgun by his side, a bunch of turkeys wandered in front of him – It was Turkey season, so naturally, he shot one for  Thanksgiving dinner.  
            For Pat, the painting process is not a ginger or delicate one. He just throws the color on the canvas and often uses a whole tube of paint with each hue. When he’s painting, he’s hunting for beauty, searching for a certain color or image that inspires his artistic process.
He jokingly explains, “You have to paint like you’re a millionaire.” He makes his brush strokes direct and says, “You just do it and leave it alone.” He squirts the vibrant colors out using caulking tubes and manipulates the medium with both hands. For Pat, painting is similar to sculpting and he’s exhausted at the end of the day. If he’s working in the studio, he’s probably listening to Hard Rock, Country or maybe James Taylor, but that’s about as subdued as the tunes get.
Reflective Compliments
Pat’s nonconformist method is likely at least part of what drew Southwest Art Magazine to him. He was interviewed in 2006 as one of the “10 Artists to Watch.” Southwest Art Magazine is the premier printed publication for fine art in and of the American West, so the feature was quite an accomplishment.
Now, seven years later, SWA has reconnected with Pat for a second interview. This time, he will be a featured artist in the “Where Are They Now?” portfolio of the October 2013 issue, which will be available in September.
Look out for the issue and stay tuned for Pat’s answers to questions like: “How has your artwork changed since you were named an ‘Artist to Watch’?”, “What are your goals for the future?” and “What has been the biggest turning point in your career?” As always, Pat’s inimitable personality and energy comes through in this first-person account of his journey as an artist.
Mountain Magic

Friday, June 28, 2013

Pat’s Fourth of July Art Show and a Charitable Donation


Freedom and Philanthropy

Patrick Matthews will be contributing one of his large, patriotic paintings to be auctioned off at The Steadman Philippon Research Institute’s Rock the Research Silver Anniversary Celebration in Vail, Colorado on July 5, 2013. The Institute is globally recognized for pioneering research in osteoarthritis, injury prevention, healing, rehabilitation and surgery. The auction will follow Pat’s Fourth of July Show at Paderewski Fine Art in Beaver Creek, Colorado, which will feature his newest lively abstracts and breathtaking landscapes. Residents and visitors of Beaver Creek will have the opportunity to meet Pat, as he will be painting plein air in front of Paderewski from June 28th – July 4th.  

Giving Back

Pat is not only known for his artistic work, but is also widely appreciated and looked up to for his charitable donations. The American Impressionist is always quick to express his gratitude to those who have supported him throughout his art journey, and that gratitude mixed with a patriotic spirit has led him to honor those in this country who are hurting. In honor of September 11, 2001, he painted an American flag and donated the original painting, alongside the proceeds from the prints to Battalion 9, the New York fire station that experienced the most loss of life on that fateful day. More recently, Pat painted another flag in honor of the victims of the Boston Marathon tragedy. His contribution to the Steadman Philippon Research Institute in Beaver Creek is not surprising, but will undoubtedly be appreciated. 


Plein Air at Paderewski Fine Art

Prior to the July 5th Steadman event, Pat will be painting under a tent in front of Paderewski Fine Art. As he will be painting plein air from June 28th – July 4th, passersby will have the unique opportunity to talk with the artist and see him in action. This will be an excellent opportunity to see a prolific artist in the midst of inspiration, and you will be able to see his creative process unfold in the stunning setting of Beaver Creek. During this time period, Paderewski will be hosting an informal show featuring Pat’s current body of work, including his vibrant abstracts, stunning landscapes and patriotic pieces. Please contact Larissa Wild Gould, Director of Paderewski Fine Art at (970) 949-6036 for inquiries regarding Pat’s Fourth of July Show and the artist’s contribution to the Steadman Philippon Research Institute, Rock the Research Celebration.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Hope, Patriotism & Dynamic Color

The Endless Strength of America - Pat Matthews
The Endless Strength Of America

Moved by Tragedy, Inspired by Hope

On April 15, 2013, our nation was drawn to the television once again as news spread of another tragedy on American soil.  The Boston Marathon bombing caused our country to search for good in the midst of terror.  Most of us hear about tragic events and although we feel terrible that they happened, we don’t do much to make a positive difference, but Pat Matthews saw an opportunity to breathe light and hope into the darkness.  He was moved to paint an American flag, the most highly recognized emblem of our country’s spirit: unity, freedom and allegiance.  Pat describes his tribute piece as “strength in color,” and the American flag sits boldly on a background of vibrant strands of color.  Though we are all different, we are one under the American flag.  Pat gave this stirring piece the name: “The Endless Strength of America,” and like all of his paintings, it evokes emotion and transports the viewer to a better place – a place of harmony. 

Bid on “The Endless Strength of America” at Pat’s Next Show

Pat decided to auction this 24”x36” oil on canvas and he is planning to hand-deliver 100% of the proceeds to The One Fund in Boston, which was created to benefit the victims and their families.  You will have the opportunity to bid on this touching piece at Pat’s next show on Friday, May 24th at Waxlander Gallery and Sculpture Garden in Santa Fe or bid early by calling Bonnie, the gallery director, at (505) 984-2202.  His show, called “Dynamic Color: The Freedom of Expression” will also feature his lively landscapes and resonant abstracts. 

Win One of Pat’s Patriotic Prints

“The Endless Strength of America” piece was not Pat’s first patriotic tribute.  In fact, he was similarly moved to paint an American flag following 9/11, and he gave all of the proceeds to Battalion 9 in New York City.  Pat also has an ever-growing body of work inspired by patriotism, and you will have the chance to win a print called “The One Thing,” which is another stunning American flag.  While the contest is a fun perk of being a fan of Pat’s works, it also serves as a means of drawing awareness to “The Endless Strength of America” piece and the hope that it represents.  Entering is easy: simply visit Pat Matthews’ Facebook page and follow the contest prompts.  You can only enter once, but earn additional entries by referring friends! The first place prize is a Kindle Fire and a signed, limited edition copy of “The One Thing,” and the second place prize is a signed, limited edition copy of “The One Thing.”

Stay tuned for details on Pat’s Fourth of July Show…

Monday, April 22, 2013


Pat’s “Dynamic Color” show at Waxlander

Destiny - Pat Matthews
When Pat Matthews first brought one of his abstract paintings into Santa Fe’s Waxlander Gallery & Sculpture Garden, it was so different from his landscapes that the gallery staff wasn’t sure what to make of it.
“They looked at me and said, ‘Pat, are you all right?’” the artist recalls. Then the painting sold--and fast. “After that they said, ‘Paint more of those!’” he says with a laugh. The successful experiment inspired Pat as he prepared for “Dynamic Color: The Freedom of Expression”, his upcoming Waxlander show running from May 21 through June 3. As the show’s title suggests, Pat’s new body of work goes in some wild new creative directions.

“I think you have to learn how to paint realistically first before you go into abstraction,” Pat says. As chronicled in our last blog post, the artist developed a keen eye for perspective in his career as an architect, originally trained in traditional landscape painting. Pat’s foray into abstraction is a more recent development, and emerged from his desire to capture all sides of the forests he explores.

Sunny Afternoon - Pat Matthews
 “When you’re out in nature, there’s so much that you can see and feel,” Pat says. “If I’m looking at a scene, I don’t just see a tree and a stream. I see shimmering light, I hear wind, I feel the warmth of the forest. I feel alive, and I feel emotions.”

When Pat channeled all of these feelings through his brush, tree trunks turned into shimmering pillars of light, the cool breeze showed up in dabs of blue, and the joyful emotions rising inside him appeared as a spectacular rainbow.

“The contemporary paintings seemed to capture the essence of the forest,” Pat says. The artist didn’t stop there, though. One day he was painting in an aspen forest and conditions were changing fast. “The wind was blowing, the light was changing. I was like, ‘How am I going to paint this?’” he says. 

Pat opened and closed his eyes, and then painted what he’d seen in that brief instant. Vertical ribbons of paint wove across the canvas as the artist replicated the cascade of colors from that single impression. The resulting abstract was the first in a growing series he calls “In The Blink Of An Eye”.
Autumn's Dance - Pat Matthews
At the Waxlander show, visitors will have the opportunity to view all three styles--traditional, contemporary and abstract. Pat is eager to see how people react to the highly varied work.

“You can tell they’re all my works because they’re all very textural and mostly very colorful,” Pat says. “But when I have a show and do all three of these styles, it almost looks like three different artists in the show. I don’t know many artists that are doing that.”

Even so, Pat stresses that he refers back to his classical training no matter what style he’s chosen. “I’m using a lot of the same techniques and thoughts,” he says. “I’m trying to tie in the lights and the darks, I’m trying to compose the painting to pull you in and make you explore the canvas.”

Browse the work that will be featured in “Dynamic Color” and you’ll find a thread that runs from Pat’s most representational works to his wildest abstracts: all of them are electrified by the spirit of the forest.

“Dynamic Color: The Freedom of Expression” features Pat Matthews and his wife Tracee Matthews. The show runs from May 21 through June 3 at Waxlander Gallery & Sculpture Garden, with a reception on Friday, May 24 from 5-7 pm. Click here for more information, follow Pat on Facebook for updates on his work!
Intrigue - Pat Matthews

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Breaking the Matrix: How Pat picked up a brush

Patrick Matthews
Mountain Family - Pat Matthews
You can still see traces of Pat Matthews' work as an architect in his oil paintings. He has a keen eye for perspective, and his canvases are so carefully plotted that collectors have dubbed them “windows into the forest.” Even so, in his years as an architect Pat could never quite imagine becoming a professional artist. Making the switch would prove to be a true leap of faith.

Pat grew up in Little Rock, Arkansas and showed artistic talent at a young age. His high school class at Little Rock Central High School voted him “Most Artistic”, but he decided to study architecture in college for fear of becoming a starving artist.  Pat graduated from the University of Arizona in 1987 with the prestigious William Wilde Memorial Award as the top designer of his class. 

“I have so much respect for Architects,” he says. “In our class at The University of Arizona there were over 200 of us to start the program.  Less than 50 of us made it through the five year program on time.” 

After completing an apprenticeship, Pat got his architectural license and started a practice as a design architect in Little Rock. Business was great but he couldn't completely forget his dream of being an artist. One day he was driving along and a large canvas caught his eye in a gallery window.

“I went in and asked who did the painting,” he says. “They told me it was Barry Thomas, and I said, 'You mean the guy I went to school with?'” Pat reconnected with Barry and they struck a deal: the architect would design a house for the artist in exchange for painting lessons. It was the seed of Pat's second career and the beginning of a close friendship.

Pat Matthews
Complements - Pat Matthews
Not long after, Pat and Barry traveled across Europe to paint in some of the same places that Monet, Van Gogh and other revered artists wielded their brushes. Pat was falling in love with painting, but back at home he still had a bustling architectural practice to manage.

“I started painting at night and doing architecture in the day, and I did that for years,” he says. There was always a new building project to work on, and Pat couldn't see a way to make the transition from the drafting table to the easel. He finally enlisted a life coach to help him hash it out.

“You know that movie The Matrix?” Pat says, referring to the Wachowski brothers film in which a man discovers that his world is actually a simulated reality.  “The life coach said, 'You've created your own 'Matrix', and you can change it just as fast.'”

That day, Pat called his biggest client and quit. “It was such an easy thing that I called every one of them and quit every job that night,” he says. “I figured if I fail I can always do architecture again.” The “Matrix” was broken, and Pat was free. 

Pat did 48 paintings for his first exhibition and all of them sold the night of the opening. It was a harbinger of his stellar career. He  then moved to Santa Fe, New Mexico and established himself as a nationally recognized artist.
Patrick Matthews
In The Blink Of An Eye - Pat Matthews
The artist has been painting full-time in the 12 years since, and now shows his works in galleries through the United States. He's sold just about everything he's created. “I'm so glad I decided to follow my passion,” he says. “I truly love what I do.”
Despite all of his successes, Pat stresses that he's still an artist in progress.  “I learn something new every day,” he says. The artist is always exploring different styles and subject matter, from his well-known neo-impressionist landscapes to abstract compositions featuring dazzling ribbons of color.

Pat's creations are in perpetual metamorphosis, but his careful regard for every detail ties it all together.

A leap of faith and a lot of hard work paid off.

Follow this blog to learn more of Pat's story, and like his Facebook page for daily updates on his latest work.