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Painting is silent poetry, and poetry is painting that speaks. Simonides

Matt Duffin


 Matt Duffin was born in 1968 and grew up in Houston, Texas. He received his Bachelor of Science in Architecture from the University of Houston. He never practiced as an architect, choosing instead to become an artist. Through art, he found that he could easily combine his tendency toward right angles and perspective drawing with the more human themes of solitude and irony. Over time, his medium has evolved from charcoal to encaustic wax, but he continues to dwell in the realm of dark recesses and stark contrasts.

In the past several years, Duffin’s work has received noteworthy critical recognition from several museum curators and private collectors of national acclaim. Tracy Bashkoff, Associate Curator for the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, began the trend by selecting his work for Encaustic Works ’03: Fourth International Biennal Exhibition at the Marist College Art Gallery, Poughkeepsie, NY. At the Los Angeles Art Show in 2007, Michael Govan, Executive Director of the Los Angeles County Museum of Art (LACMA) and former Deputy Director of the Solomon R. Guggenheim Museum, singled out his work and brought it to the attention of Lynda and Stewart Resnick, LACMA’s most esteemed benefactors. Govan then facilitated the acquisition of one of Duffin’s pieces by the Resnicks’ Roll International Corporation, which added another piece to its collection a year later. Other notable collections include The Progressive Art Collection, the Crocker Art Museum (which in 2008 acquired the piece entitled “Crowd Control” for its permanent collection), the Tulman Collection of Contemporary Art in Chicago, and the private collections of Carlie Wilmans (granddaughter of San Francisco arts benefactor Phyllis Wattis (1914-2002) and Director of the Phyllis C. Wattis Foundation), and Eleanor Notides (Senior Vice President of Christie’s in New York). Duffin’s work has also been shown at the Bakersfield Museum of Art and at fairs nationwide including The LA Art Show, The Dallas Fair, Art Chicago, SOFA, Scope New York, Flow-Miami, and AAF NYC. His work has appeared in Artnews, The Morning News, NYArts Magazine, The Philadelphia Inquirer,  Elephant Magazine (London), The Sacramento Bee, Studio Visit Magazine, Communication Arts Illustration Annual and Zyzzyva, among other publications.  In 2013, his work will appear on the cover of the German edition of Jonathan Franzen’s newest book, Farther Away (Weiter Weg), published by Rowohlt.

Duffin is represented by galleries in Los Angeles, Boise, Boston, and Houston. He has lived in Spain, Costa Rica, and Taos, New Mexico and currently resides in northern California with his wife and two children.


B.S. Architecture, University of Houston, Houston, Texas, 1991


Juror’s Award, Juror: Marion Parmenter, 20th Annual National Juried Exhibition: Works on Paper, The Berkeley Art Center, Berkeley, CA, August 2003

Director’s Award, Exhibit Director: Laura Moriarty, Encaustic Works ’03: Fourth International Bienniel Exhibition, The Marist College Art Gallery, Poughkeepsie, NY, December 2003

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