Q&A – Questions for Matthew Feyld
Q: Can you tell me about your background
I grew up in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. I started drawing and painting at an early age. I moved to Montreal five years ago. Now I split my time between Montreal, and New York.
Q: What was the first artwork you made? What / How / Why?
I can’t really remember my very first artwork, but I do remember drawing a series of deer with my auntie when I was probably 7 years old.
Q: Was there a particular moment or event where you decided to become an artist?
My auntie was a terrific wildlife painter, and I would spend a lot of time with her around her studio. She really encouraged me to make art, and from a young age I saw that it was possible to be an artist.
Q: What is most important to you regarding your work: The Process. The visual outcome. The material? Or something else?
I would have to say that all of those elements are important to the work. My process involves a lot of questions and investigation. Searching for a feeling that is based on a visual experience gained from the materials.
Q: Can you tell me more about your routines and rituals in your daily practice?
I spend a lot of time on preparations. Mixing paint, stretching and priming canvas, as well as tidying my work area. I often will look at the work for hours on end, trying to decide what can stay and what has to go.
Q: The process and the choice of material and ideas surrounding your work, can you tell us more about it?
I mainly use acrylic, or synthetic latex paint on canvas or wood panel. Lately I’ve been mixing my own acrylics from liquid or dry pigment. I find that the colors I derive from these pigments are unlike the colors most often found in tubes. I gravitate towards mixing colors that are slightly impure, and my lines are all done by hand. My hope in doing this is to help slow the viewer down. I don’t want the viewer to draw conclusions about the work too quickly. The imperfections in the colors and lines help to block that impulse.
I use acrylic because the decisions I make in the process of painting are made very quickly. The faster drying time of the acrylic really helps with this. I make marks on the surfaces and then I spend a lot of time editing them, little by little. Sometimes a couple of millimeters can make or break a painting. It can take days, weeks, or months until the paintings feel right. Until the surfaces have been built up and all of the elements are there.
Splitting my time between Montreal, and New York has been incredibly beneficial. Having that physical distance from the works, and having the time to contemplate them and not having the ability to act on any of the impulses to change the work has been helpful.
Q: Can you tell me more about the smaller works consisting of 4 squares in a room in every corner?
By hanging the four components in direct reference to the existing architecture, the room becomes an essential part of the piece. The whiteness of the wall becomes an integral part of the work, and the space itself becomes activated. Once hung, the four pieces function as a single piece. This idea came from an ongoing investigation of space, and the question of how we experience painting.
Q: What influences you?
Walking, reading, music.
Q: The artist Agnes Martin seems to have made a large impact on you. Can you tell me why and more ?
Agnes Martin is one of my all time favorite painters. Where do I start? Maybe it’s the Saskatchewan connection, haha.
Q: Is it important for you that people try to understand and question your work?
I have my own relationships with the paintings, and I’m open to others having their own experiences. That’s why I rarely title my works. My paintings are questions in a sense. I’m not that interested in finding the answers, but I’m very interested in the search. I hope that the work would ask questions of the viewer. Questions about themselves.
Q: Can you let us in on some of the future projects, works?
I have work in an exhibition in Copenhagen at Les Gens Heureux through October 23rd. I will show work in an exhibition at Birch Contemporary in Toronto curated by Micah Lexier that runs in tandem with his solo exhibition, ‘These Five Things.’ It opens on October 29th, I’m really excited about that. I have a two-person exhibition with Russell Tyler in Portland at Ampersand in November. I also have work up at 57W57 Arts in New York.