ArtQuench Gallery Announces
Eric Demattos Winner of the
“October Vibe” Art Competition
Eric uses the light in such a way that creates a dramatic image that tells its own wonderful story. Eric moves from photomanipulation to painting on birch adding photo transfers that can only be described as originality at it’s finest.
Eric has won one year with ArtQuench Gallery
We welcome Eric to the ArtQuench Family!
We are proud to represent such a gifted artist. View Eric’s Gallery profile Page Here
I was born at a very young age in Glendale, California. Right from the start I had a wonderfully diverse upbringing by being blessed (because its better to think of it that way) with parents who seem to have a nomadic streak in their blood. I moved from California to Mexico where I learned English (yes English) in Mexico from an American friend. My parents on the other hand spoke Portuguese at home, and of course everyone else spoke Spanish. All of this had the effect of a sort of smorgasbord of languages in my early home life. But this was just the start, from these early years until my high school years we had a bit of a “pinball” experience moving from Mexico to New York, to Texas, back to California…and so on. However despite all the different places, friends and schools one thing was constant. I always loved to create, build and invent. My imagination was always busy and the normal way to do things never seemed like the most interesting way to follow.
Grade school whizzed by and I was whisked away to a boarding high school. Finding that high school was excessively boring (while simultaneously getting terrible grades) I dropped out, took my GED and went to college. In college I stepped knee deep in the sciences believing this was the only path to a employable future. However all this changed when I swung by the art department at my university in Riverside California and saw a poster advertising an art contest. The winner would get a $1,500 scholarship! I thought 15 crisp hundred dollar bills for doing a painting…how hard can it be! I went and got my supplies and did my first painting using acrylic paints. I did it all in one sitting and turned it in on the deadline the next day. The picture was of a baby looking at the world which also was a sunflower, oh yea, and the baby was in outer space…because thats where babies that smell sunflowers (that are actually the world) would be…I think. I was so excited (but not surprised) when I won the scholarship (after all it was a baby in outer space…I mean really…) I switched majors and jumped into the art department with both feet. Every class I took convinced me that this was my calling. First it was ceramics, then sculpture, then painting and even book making. Lastly I took photography. It was a black and white class and the school had a tiny dark room where we would all go and watch the magic of developing photographs happen. I enjoyed it so much that even after my class was done I got a job being the darkroom lab tech. Alas the wonders of college had to end and I found myself at my senior art show wondering what would happen next, after all the last thing my education prepared me for was life in the real world. However, it was encouraging to be the only one to sell a piece during that show, a black and white photo I had taken of my dog jumping between some logs.
At that point I had two choices to make, become instantaneously famous (by means of a magical lamp and genie) or work hard as a starving artist and try to make ends meet. Since the first option was not possible due to the low availability of magical lamps at the local stores and caves I decided to give freelance artistry a go. Despite how much I enjoyed doing art and photography in jobs that I could find here and there, I also enjoyed buying food to be able to eat. It seemed both “hobbies” could not be done simultaneously. This is when I took a detour and went into business for a while. However the desire to create and follow my passion in art was ever present and like a rumbling in your stomach that could not be quieted.
Finally enough was enough and I knew I had to craft a path to art. I decided more schooling was the answer (since that had worked out for me so well the last time) and I got accepted into graduate school in University of Idaho, in Moscow, Idaho. There I was able to take the time to really delve into photography at a deeper level. On top of that the landscape was beautiful and almost haunting. I began to do a series photographing some of the abandoned houses in the area. I was not trying to document them, as some photographers seek to do, but I was trying to interpret them. To translate what I saw into a feeling that could be communicated through a picture. My process involves visiting a place over a long span of time and getting to know a place, like you would a friend. Cold winter days created a different mood at a place then the happy spring afternoons. From hundreds, sometimes even thousands of pictures I choose the one that is what I find the truest interpretation of the place. That is the image I choose to share with the rest of the world. An image that takes something rejected and abandoned and portrays it as relevant and often beautiful. Some of my images are mixed media that utilize photography transferred over an acrylic painting. Others are just the photographs that have been digitally edited to better convey the feel of the moment. My aim is to let the place speak and use the media and techniques that best enhance the message and feel of the places I visit.
Enter and you could win the cover of our next Issue of AQM!
Theme; “Inspirational Images”
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