Coming Down The Mountain
I’ve always painted my local environment - a contemporary view of it (a
critical environmental realism). As a landscape painter my main motivation
is painting urban landscapes that push the boundaries of the picturesque.
In the foothills of Mount Wellington on the margins of Glenorchy I found a
place at the top of Chapel Street facing west - a waterway called
Humphries Rivulet - a beautiful natural feature that has been disrespectfully
relegated from it’s rightful position in nature to the commonplace.
The transformation of this place is evident from it’s remnants. Humphries
Rivulet is part of the suburban Glenorchy landscape, subsequently it
comes with all the neglect associated with a social and environmental
As an urban landscape painter I find Humphries Rivulet interesting because
these places are on the margins - they present interesting incongruous
imagery - beauty marred by the modern human presence.
I paint landscapes that aren’t perfect, this is inevitable for an urban
landscape painter. I dare to find beauty in these places - every place has
its’ moment. Humphries Rivulet is still an undeniably beautiful area despite
the obvious degradation and is as worthy a subject for a landscape painter
as any pristine natural environment. Even the ugliest urban landscape interests me. Humphries Rivulet is far from ugly, yes it is marred, but it still has a natural integrity and beauty that speaks to me of the past.
Matthew Armstrong is a landscape painter with a dynamic practice and
committed heightened realism that brings a focus and attention to the immediate
visual that we have around us. Winner Glover Prize 2009, his work is highly
respected and is known in numerous collections both here, interstate and overseas.
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