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Pomerene Center to feature new exhibit starting in January

| December 11, 2013

COSHOCTON – Craig Matis, an artist and parent of a young man with mental disabilities, will be having an exhibit at The Pomerene Center for the Arts Jan. 4 – Feb. 7, 2014 entitled. “Autism: A Mexican Adventure” with an artist reception on Saturday, Jan. 4 from 4 – 6 p.m. Matis has created a series of 17 panels, all of which tell the story of a father who takes his autistic son on a journey through Mexico, as a way of coping with the recent death of his wife in America.

Using a mixed media technique of folded paper and 3-D pencil drawings, Matis has incorporated his own personal experiences with raising a special needs child into a surrealistic narrative that leads the son on a mystical dream journey.

In its early days, before the advent of Power Point presentations and the youtube generation, his rock band, Uzizi, incorporated its live performances with slide visuals of original artwork, all of which became an intriguing element of the band’s identity.

Being a visual artist, as well as a musician, designing what he coined as “songbooks” later became a format, which was a natural extension of the band experience. The gallery viewer was directly involved with the individual books: walking by the text/imagery on the gallery walls while listening to the band’s recorded material on a portable CD player or iPod. In earlier exhibitions, each individual song had a corresponding songbook, which consisted of a series of images that illustrated the song’s narrative.

A few years later, Matis created two songbook installations. One was entitled “Riverside: Personal Views of Racism”, which was followed by “Trench Cuisine: A Rock Band’s Recipe for Semi-Success”. The latter work featured a series of 24 panels, engaging the viewer in a surreal story about a fictional band’s attempt to achieve commercial success, from its inception to its culminating tour through the United Kingdom.

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Category: Arts & Entertainment

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Article contributed to The Beacon.

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