Art has always played a major role in Matthew Rucker’s life, from his many years of managing galleries and frame shops to formative days of watching his grandfather work on his own “wonderful and lasting” pieces.
“The thing he taught me that sticks with me most is that art is all about process,” explains Rucker, “and in that process is happiness, catharsis, and connection.”
This lesson took on a deeply personal meaning about eight years ago when Rucker started developing his signature Balance series. Unlike the “complex and busy surrealism” of his earlier paintings, Rucker’s “hyperminimalism” reduces his focal points to just one element and puts an emphasis on animals that are modeled after his own friends and family.
“The combination of sharing my deepest personal connections in hyperrealist detail in a minimalist setting creates not only a unique style of paintings,” says Rucker, “but paintings that project tranquility, simplicity, and joy.”
They also make the most of Rucker’s colorblindness. “The two most important elements of my paintings are the gradation of my backgrounds and the detail of the animals I paint,” he says. “Both of those things are made easier by my colorblindness, since I can see both gradation and detail better than people with normal color vision. I also mix color in unusual ways, which helps me create unique and beautiful colors that perfectly suit the calm and easy nature of my paintings.”