The weird and wonderful artwork of Matthew Dutton!

Today we are going to take a look at a unique and interesting artist who has forged his own path, and does something he truly loves and is passionate about, which I think we can all respect and envy.
Matthew Dutton‘s work features (but is not limited to) interesting sculptural creatures that embody a simultaneous sense of attraction and repulsion.  These sculptures conjure emotions playing on morbid curiosity and have influences from such artists as Patricia Piccinni and Ron Pippin.

Matthew Dutton lives and works in Hixson, Tennessee.  Outside of his studio practice, Matthew works as the Art Specialist at Rock City Gardens.  He is a graduate from the University of Tennessee at Chattanooga majoring in BFA 3D Sculpture.

As part of the Special Events team at Rock City, Dutton builds large scale props that help aesthetically tie the park together for the different events held at Rock City throughout the year.  He builds gnomes for different areas of the park as well as restores and rebuilds the antique gnomes and fairy tale characters for the parks vignettes.

Matthew Dutton has exhibited in several gallery and festival shows including the 4 Bridges Arts Festival in Chattanooga, Tennessee, A group show at the Van Eaton Gallery in California, and a solo exhibition at the Lowe Art Mill in Huntsville, Alabama.  Matthew has won several awards including Best in Show at the Fire Fly Fine Art Festival in Dickson, Tennessee and Award of Excellence at the Cress Gallery in Chattanooga, Tennessee.

Dutton has been a studio apprentice for several well known southern artists and has taught art classes at the Hunter Museum of American Art for several years.

Matthew Dutton is involved in many facets of the local art community including the 2011 HATCH, (History, Art, Technology and Cultural Happenings) event, where he and an artist group installed several public sculptures in the Chattanooga downtown area. Dutton has been involved with several mural projects, constructions for theatrical performances, and local art happenings around town.

Dutton’s busy artistic lifestyle allows him to persistently pursue new levels of artistic enlightenment through material exploration and technique development.

This super busy artist took a few minutes out of his schedule for a quick chat with me this afternoon!

HH : Are these creations inspired by nightmares? They seem very dream-like.

MD : Well maybe subconsciously they are inspired by dreams.. But not directly…  I often dream of building the sculptures more than being frightened by them. The idea for these creatures originally came from a raccoon that was living in my attic one winter.  I would be lying in bed trying to sleep and would hear Christmas ornaments bouncing across the ceiling as if something was tossing them around.  I formulated these Phigments as a mental visualization of what was causing such a ruckus in the attic.  The scratching, stomping, fighting sounds I would hear allowed my imagination to wander and come up with these domestic intruders.  Maybe they are dream-like for I would drift to sleep as I imagined what was up there raising hell in the attic!  Many of them are set up onto and around domestic objects for they get into your food and stuff once you drift to sleep.

HH : What is your favorite horror film?

MD : I grew up watching horror films my whole life! some of my earliest memories are being hypnotized by the lighting and effects in Pumpkin Head.  I love the weirdness of In the Mouth of Madness.  Texas Chainsaw Massacre, Child’s Play, Poltergeist, The Gate, Maximum Overdrive, Pet Sematery are some of the oldies but goodies I like.

There are some many good movies that have effects and monsters that I like! Its hard to just pick one!

HH : Have you ever been approached by film-makers for set designs or special effects work? Are you interested in that?

MD : I have helped some local musicians work on special effects for their music videos recently!

Strung Like A Horse has a trailer for the new video that we worked on.  The first Video called GLAD has me and some of my work in it.

I’m currently working on some props for an upcoming video, but its top secret!  I have built tons of characters and costumes and haunted houses too!
Some examples can be seen at Blowing Screams Farm.
HH : Have you ever been tempted to sneak one of your scary creations into your park?
MD : Although that would be hilarious I have yet to do so…
HH : How does one go about commissioning a piece from you?
MD :You can direct people to contact me with these email addresses:

MDuttonart@msn.com or Matt@seerockcity.com

Well, there you have it!
It’s funny that just a few days ago, one of our Facebook admins was desperately trying to find the info on this artist so we could post his work with proper credit, and it was a true struggle! Thanks to the keen eyes of some Facebook fans we found him, and now can pass on this great stuff with all of you.
I hope you enjoyed this quick look at an amazing artist!
Be sure and find Matthew Dutton on Facebook and follow him on tumblr!
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