MATTHEW ALLAN CLARKE
Marx compared capitalism to slavery, and man does it feel that way sometimes. I work a job I don't like, surrounded by coworkers who feel the same way. I get yelled at a lot. Sometimes it's fine; there is a lot of loud equipment, and some times people lose their temper. But the yelling is almost constant. And that's just the people! The labor is brutal and the hours are long. Shoveling concrete (liquid rocks) in thirty-degree heat is awful. It is mind-numblingly repetitive. And all of this effort and abuse is to make the concrete as flat and straight and boring as possible in the shortest amount of time. But the chores have to be done. To quote Teller (of the magical duo Penn and Teller): “art is whatever you’re doing when the chores are done.” In order to express, and alleviate my frustration as an “elitist” in a blue collar reality, I make abstract art incorporating found materials from my construction sites. I take the leftovers from my subverted labours and appropriate them into totems.
Actually a lot of my coworkers like my art; or at least the good ones do.”