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Artist Talk: Matthew Picton

Join the Elizabeth Leach Gallery for an artist talk with Matthew Picton. Picton delves deeply into sites of cultural, political and sociological significance through elaborate three-dimensional sculptural artworks made from paper cut-outs. Each one is layered with historical text and imagery related to specific locations throughout the globe, and his new series, El Dorado feature sites throughout Europe, South America, and Africa that exemplify man’s quest for riches. El Dorado was known as the mythical city of gold believed to exist somewhere in the vast Amazon basin. Although no more than a mirage, it remains a powerful symbol of humankind’s feverish madness in pursuit of wealth and commodity. 

The artworks included in Picton’s El Dorado exhibition present correlating literary narratives which coexist alongside contemporary music and movie references. A highlight of the show includes one of the artist's largest artworks to date: a breathtakingly massive and brilliantly executed 10 foot x 10 foot unframed wall sculpture titled Histories of the Congo River #2, 2018. In all of these artworks Picton is figuratively and literally layering meaning to illuminate periods of societal and cultural upheaval within each country's past to present. The artist continues to present a multifaceted look at human history; one that acknowledges periods of violence and oppression and the indefatigable beauty and resilience that endures.

Elizabeth Leach Gallery
417 NW 9th Ave
Portland, OR