Art Feature - Mat Brown
“I am a visual artist living and working in Berlin Germany, working entirely with ink on paper.”
The illustrative style that I have, lends itself well to narrative story telling. I create intricate depictions of, what I can only describe as my world-view; meaning I create elaborate narratives around how I see the world and try to incorporate, how I was educated and a reflection of the culture, I come from.
I was born and raised in Toronto Canada, educated in the public school system in a white christian family. The cultural influence of my upbringing is something I try to be honest about when approaching larger subjects like the evolution of life on earth, political narratives about contemporary culture or concepts in society like climate change.
The aim of my work, or the intent of it, is to convey a kind of open stream of conscious satire of the world I see myself living in. I hope to achieve some level of communication with the viewer, not in a literal way necessarily, but at least provide a world in which the viewer can enter and discover details and easter eggs of recognition, little references to the way I see the topic I'm narrating in each piece.
The overall intention of my work is to create a kind of visual record of how I see the world, which I started by illustrating the history and evolution, animal life on earth from the emergence of life, through the dinosaurs and up to the entrance of homo sapiens and the development of our culture from my perspective.
In laying this ground work of my world-view by depicting the concept of the evolution of life, I have gone on to draw the development of culture and currently I'm addressing the issue of climate change as a cultural concept.
Our relationship to the concept of climate change, it's effect on the Oceans and on our societies in general (from the perspective of my work) is that of a cultural layer, on top of the reality that everything we do as humans on this planet is ‘natural’. Our human interaction with other systems of nature, in my opinion, is currently functioning like a poison, cancer or disease.
That being said, I believe that pathogens are also part of nature, that we hold ourselves back from being able to conceptually move forward in terms of interacting more symbiotically with the rest of the world.
I think, that if we could fundamentally see ourselves as part of nature and not separate from it, we would be able to see more clearly how we could contribute to the well being of our environment, more than the way it's often talked about now.
I think culture is causing anthropogenic climate change, the culture of materialism and consumerism.
If we as humans are going to be a positive force in consort with the rest of macro (animal) life on earth, I believe, we need to look through different cultural eyes, - perhaps not human eyes...