A good friend of Matthew Courtney once referred to his work as “Pop Art with soul”. His work is a combination of his joy in playing with materials and process and his reconciling form and content. Matthew Courtney’s work straddles the line between art-making and play, adult and child, serious and humorous. He tackles serious subjects with humor, making frightening things funny and funny things frightening. His sculptures include references to modern art, sculptures and paintings from art history and imagery from western popular culture.
Matthew Courtney lives and works in Philadelphia as a sculptor and teacher. He was born in Washington D.C. and was raised in Philadelphia. After getting his MFA in Kent Ohio, he worked at The Cleveland Institute of Art for four years. Matt then moved back to Philadelphia to work as a studio technician at The Clay Studio followed by embarking on his twenty year career as an adjunct professor at many Philadelphia area institutions. He is married to an artist and teacher and works out of his home based studio. Clay is his primary medium with found objects playing an important role. He has an active show record that includes many group and solo shows. As a result of his three residencies at Lanzhou City University in 2015, 2017 and 2018, Matthew Courtney’s recent work reflects a fusion of Chinese and Western themes and style. His art has been influenced by Chinese culture, materials, and his relationships with Chinese faculty, students, and artists.