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February 8, 2011

Body = Beautiful


Body = Beautiful
by
Matthew Ivan Cherry


I paint the body because it validates our experience
as if living is not enough.
It makes tangible my existence 
otherwise fluid and slippery
and vaporous.
It reaffirms the existence of others 
that I observe
and clothe with enamel.

I know them…they know me.
We connect and come
together.
In briefs we bump.

I dwell with them in proximity
and pajamas.

Our breathing becomes one
engaged
intimate
connected.

The body that sleeps
offers random beauty
with no rules of composure
only choices and 
possibilities without predilection.

Through my voyeur gaze and the silent language
of one’s interactions in underwear
documented, random, and Rorschach-ian,
…I seek to invoke interpretation
through visual associations and analogies
specifically ambiguous
connecting the childhood experience 
with adult expectations…
connecting the adult to the child within.

I’ve been there…I’ve done that…I know this…
I remember.

I search for a sense of the familiar 
through the observed,
the fairytale within the experience,
the reality within the nightmare
and the wet dream.

Through memory
the past brings meaning to the immediate.
The shifts of interpretation are dependent on the present
connecting literally and visually through my paint,
connecting my imaginations 
with bodies used as vehicles 
that drive me…
somewhere that I had not intended,
connecting
you and I
here…in this moment
with the unspoken language of my paintings
and the bodies depicted
sharing a common space
of simple
immediate
intuitive recognition.

…the quietude of lullaby longing
…the solemnity of a post-chemo drip repose
…the mantra moans of induced labor 
…the fits of R.E.M. stage sleeping
with limbs and appendages twitching and flinging 
manifesting 
nightly narratives
of daily visual records
reprocessed and 
released…

all of these 
are places where I have been…
all of these
are places where I go
…when I paint.
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