Modern Surrealism by Matthew Grabelsky

An oil painting of a woman standing in front of a bear in the New York subwayExit Pursued by A Bear, oil on canvas


Matthew Grabelsky hold degrees in both art and astrophysics, lending an interesting perspective to his realistic representational paintings that combine very modern imagery and scenes with a touch of surrealism and classical embellishment. Grabelsky studied painting under great masters in Italy and France, allowing the viewer to see his contemporary conceptual style in a different, contrasting light.


A painting of a man with a the head of a wolfThe Big Bad Wolf, oil on canvas

One of the biggest aspects of Grabelsky’s work is his fascination with the subconscious, and the idea of dreams or fairytales manifesting as part of real life. In most of his paintings, the collision between reality and dreamscape is obvious, the dream often manifesting as a lone figure, a fantastic creature or oversized, incongruous animal – seeming somehow perfectly at ease with its surroundings.


I’m a fan of Grabelsky’s sculptural works, where he brings the same theme of dreams mixing with reality, but allows it to take a more tangible shape. Galvanized steel mesh sculptures of animals (often types that would never be found in the regions where the art is installed) appear like shimmering mirages, placed in parks and tucked into wooded areas.     


A photo of two mesh turkey sculptures in a wooded areaTurkies, galvanized steel mesh and stainless steel wire

Written by: Dallas Jeffs
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