artist / participant
Best known for his sculptural work, Matthew Ronay creates beautifully crafted objects from wood, fabric, and clay, which range in scale from small free-standing and wall-based sculptures to immersive installations. He draws out the totemic and surreal qualities of objects through his distinctive use of form and color, which conjure traditions of non-Western art-making and American folk art, as well as spirituality and psychedelia. Straddling a vocabulary married to modernist abstraction and ritualistic objects, Ronay's sculptures move beyond language and image; they give primacy to the viewer's experience, and reward close observation of the textured and vivid surfaces, orifices, and protrusions that comprise his otherworldly forms.
Dichotomy is at the center of Ronay's new installation, When Two Are In One, commissioned as part of Pérez Art Museum Miami's Project Gallery series. This body of 11 sculptures, arranged in a processional atop a low plinth in the center of the gallery, suggest reproduction and twinning as their subject. The varied objects in this installation employ strategies of symmetry, reflection, and doubling—from penetration to conception, from mitosis to embryonic coexistence. The installation's title evokes the hermaphroditic underpinning of the project and is manifest in the composition of single works and in sets of asymmetrically paired sculptures. When Two Are In One also offers an evolution of Ronay's exploration of ritual objects and architecture, placing the form of the altar in direct conversation with modes of display associated with modernist sculpture. This coupling is emblematic of Ronay's open and imaginative dialogue with art histories from around the world and across temporalities.
Project Gallery: Matthew Ronay is organized by Pérez Art Museum Miami Associate Curator Diana Nawi. This exhibition is presented by Brickell Bank with additional support provided by Knight Foundation. Additional individual support has been provided by Dorothy and Aaron Podhurst and Podhurst Orseck P. A. Brickell Bank: Member FDIC.