Artist Matthew Brinston on “A Battle, A Transformation”
In November 2013, former musician and talented visual artist Matthew Brinston suffered a nearly fatal motorcycle accident where he was flung head first into a Dart Rail Station in downtown Dallas. After surgery, Matthew was declared dead while in a coma for many days. Brinston’s latest body of work in “A Battle, A Transformation,” portrays his own struggle with recovery, shown in twenty multimedia paintings. You can see his work now at Mokah Gallery in Deep Ellum, showing previously at The Ant Colony Gallery, The Misfit Gallery, South Side on Lamar’s Janette Kennedy Gallery, and Dallas Observer’s fifth annual Artopia. Matthew answered a few questions about his work, and how things have changed for him over the last year. If you’re in the area, stop by Mokah to see “A Battle, A Transformation,” and check out his Closing Reception on March 28th.
How did art play a role in your early life?
MB: Drawing people was always something I remember doing growing up. I always enjoyed drawing people and the emotions I saw on their faces.
After your accident, how did you know visual art was your form of therapy?
MB: I figured out that visual art was a helpful form of therapy when I started painting a couple of months after the accident and all the bitter angry feelings, all the negative emotions I had went away when I just focused on painting something.
Tell me a bit about “A Battle, A Transformation.” Can you briefly summarize the inspiration and process behind the work?
MB: The whole inspiration of the body of work is making a positive transformation in life and pushing past any obstacle or anything negative that may stand in your way.
(One Last Give)
Who or what is your biggest inspiration (personal or professional / past or present)?
MB: My biggest inspiration…well there’s a ton of artists I look up to both musically and visually, but I don’t think I could pin point one as the biggest inspiration; they all equally inspire me to be a better artist. The visual artists would have to be Barry McGee, Matisse, Jeremy Fish, Charlie Isoe, and of course, Pablo Picasso. The musical artists that inspire me are Blake Mills, Lightning Hopkins, The Strokes, Robert Johnson, Kanye, Michael Jackson, and John Lee Hooker.
Now that you’ve been through such an intense personal experience, what would you say is your biggest fear?
MB: That’s a tough question. I definitely have a different view on death after the accident. I find it much more intriguing now; I know I’m on Earth for a reason still and I think it’s to influence people positively through my artwork.
See all of Matthew’s work from “A Battle, A Transformation” at his Closing Reception at Mokah Gallery on March 28th. Learn more about him by staying in touch on Instagram or Twitter. Top photo by Nicollette Mollett.