Difficult to describe, Michael Madzo's artwork speaks for itself in luminous hues and vivid, often-times whimsical subjects. His trademark technique of sewing bits of his paintings together attracts attention both for its symbolism and for the rich texture it adds to the works. Madzo’s artwork is a synthesis of both traditional and textile art. “The incorporation of the thread was, at first, simply a substitution for adhesive. I became intrigued with the perforation of the paper as well as the textural qualities of the thread.” he says thoughtfully, “At first, merely a structural element of the painting, the sewing became an extension of the painting process.” Collage was the result. In assimilating materials at hand, the artist created something new.
Many of Madzo’s images depict personae and creatures that are at once fanciful, grotesque, and heroic, and, at the same time, communicate a compassion and empathy that results in a haunting impression.
One of the most striking details of Madzo’s work is a specific type of eye. We see and experience with our physical eyes, as well as see and experience with the spiritual eye. In Madzo’s work it is the spiritual eye. Madzo states, “ I see the figures in my paintings as someone at the end of an untold journey, still questioning the wisdom gained.”
Madzo’s figures speak chapters to anyone willing to spend time contemplating them. And where does Madzo go within himself and what are his thoughts when he encounters the body of his work, the living work, surrounding him in his studio? “It’s the mystery”, says Madzo, “It’s looking for liquid moments in this otherwise solid and stiff world. It’s a function of the artist. We learn to be the conduit for the formless worlds, the indescribable, the invisible, the subtle energies of consciousness. It is a translation device – a facilitator. It is a collecting of moments.”
Michael Madzo graduated from Arizona State University with a Bachelor of Fine Arts Degree. Since 1987, he has been represented by galleries in Los Angeles, New York, Paris and New Mexico. He began showing at Hunter Kirkland Contemporary in 2004.
"The Remembering Place"
by Michael Madzo
of Excelsior, Minnesota
2-D Mixed Media