LA FAMILIA is a collection by Matthew Huff materialized as black-and-white iPhone pictures with white ink encoded drawings printed at 1,000 times their original size, giving them a very raw punk-like aesthetic.
The original photographs were taken using an iPhone 3G equipped with a fixed 2.0 mega pixel digital camera. Huff’s pictures are mostly taken while on tour with his band LAZY or while traveling the United States. The photos range from portraiture to landscape and documentary with a quick snapshot-like feel. However spontaneous they are inherently embedded with a potentially greater purpose than Facebook or Twitter. Though an avid user of both, Huff tends to take his cell phone pictures out of their immediate Internet exposure and content into a seemingly more permanent printed form. His last exhibition contained one hundred and ninety of his printed iPhone pictures.
The text and symbols drawn with white pen and ink are Huff’s original written language, heavily inspired by Hispanic street gang graffiti. Being raised in Los Angeles County, Huff was keenly observant of the ever-present gang graffiti, particularly throughout his neighboring city Azusa, where he spent much of his time skateboarding. The best skateboarding spots were located in the heart of the Azusa 13’s territory, giving him an early exposure to the street gang's cryptic communication. Thirteen represents the letter M, being that it is the thirteenth letter in the alphabet, and Azusa’s “13” was a reference to its affiliation with the Mexican Mafia, one of the oldest and most powerful prison gangs in the United States. This sharp contrast of creativity and hostility are very similar to the images depicted in the film Dog Town and Z Boys about the history of skateboarding and its revolution in the Santa Monica, Venice Beach area.
LA FAMILIA is directly inspired by Huff’s passion and interest in life’s duality:
positivity informed by the negative, creation from chaos, smooth yet abrasives, black, white, and the gray areas in between.
Matthew Huff moved to Kansas City, Missouri after attending Pacific Northwest College of Art in Portland, Oregon.
He founded and directed The Church, an alternative art space on Troost Avenue.
From 2008-2009 The Church was currated as an art gallery, performance space, music venue, community center, public art studio, and was host to over 100 different local, national, and international artists.
Matthew has exhibited his work in various galleries including the BFA gallery at PNCA, Portland, OR, Nationale, Portland, OR, Jace Gacey, Portland, OR, Stumptown, Portland, OR, RAD SUMMER, Portland, OR, Wonder Fair, Lawrence, KS and The Foundation, Kansas City, MO.
The opening reception is September 3, 2010 from 6-10 pm. The show runs through September 24. After September 3, contact Paula Rose to view by appointment: firstname.lastname@example.org.