Matthew James Collins
Matthew James Collins was born in Oak Park, Illinois, in 1970. Nurtured in an artistic family, his enthusiasm for art was encouraged from the earliest age. By his early teens, his study of drawing had already begun under the tutelage of his father, James Edward Collins, an award-winning architect.
Collins was accepted and studied at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago, where he focused on drawing, etching and sculpture. He completed a BA in the History of Art and Architecture at the University of Illinois at Chicago. In 1994 he traveled to Europe to complete his artistic formation. For over 15 years, Matthew has been living in Italy, studying and researching the classical techniques of painting and sculpture.
An artist of unusually wide breadth, his oil paintings, affrescos and sculptures reveal a rigorous study of the masterworks of the past and a deep observation of nature. Not limited to a single genre, his oeuvre includes portraiture, landscape, decoration and figurative subjects.
He exhibits internationally and his works are represented in public and private collections throughout the United States and Europe, including the Museu Europeu d’Art Modern (MEAM) in Barcelona, Spain. The quality of Matthew's work has been recognized by numerous artistic associations including the Portrait Society of America, the National Sculpture Society, the Art Renewal Center, and the American Society of Traditional Artists. He is also a contributing writer for the Epoch Times’ New York edition.
Along with his wife and two young children, Matthew divides his time between Italy and Chicago.
Art’s purpose is to explore our inner existence and make it visible. Engaging the physical world and extracting meaning has been the artist's concern for millennia. The power of the metaphor possible in the human figure is a driving force in my work. The result comes from observation tempered by the language of sculptural form represented in so many masterpieces of the past.
My ultimate hope is to address the fundamentals of the Art: Truth and Beauty seen through eyes educated to the nuances of Nature.
2015 - The Work of Matthew James Collins, Michael LaConte Gallery, Chicago, USA
2000 - Matthew James Collins, Village of Oak Park Gallery, Illinois, USA
Selected Group Exhibitions
2015 - The National Sculpture Society's 82nd Annual Awards Exhibition, Brookgreen Gardens, SC USA
- Oak Park Art League's Artist Member Show, Oak Park, IL USA
2014 - The Laumeister Fine Art Competition, The Bennington Center for the Arts, Vermont USA
- Oak Park Art League Artist Member's show, Oak Park, IL USA
2013 - The Laumeister Fine Art Competition, The Bennington Center for the Arts, Vermont, USA
- Oak Park Art League Artist Member's show, Oak Park, IL USA
2012 - Portrait Society of America's International Competition and Conference, Philadelphia, USA
- Oak Park Art League's 2nd National Carriage House Exhibition, Oak Park, IL, USA
- 4th National Juried Catholic Art Competition and Exhibition, St. Vincent's College, Latrobe, PA, USA
2011 - 78th Annual Awards Exhibition of the National Sculpture Society, Brookgreen Gardens, SC, USA
2010 - Parallax, La Galleria, Royal Opera Arcade, London, UK
- Supplement (Parallax pre-exhibition II), Royal Society of Medicine, London, UK
2009 - L'arte del incidere, Tito, Bari, Italy
2008 - Redeeming Beauty, traveling exhibition, USA
2005 - Five American Artists, Palazzo Medici-Riccardi, Florence, Italy,
2004 - Mentors and Protégées, Vose Gallery, Boston, USA
- Still Classical, Drawings from Florence, Palazzo Cenci, Roma, Italy
2003 - La Scuola Naturalistica di Firenze: Ritratti e Paesaggi, Galleria Albero Celeste, San Gimignano, Italy
2002 - La Scuola Naturalista, Galleria Albero Celeste, San Gimignano, Italy
- Biennial Art Exhibition, Sant' Agata de’ Goti, Naples, Italy
2001 - Contuscan Art, American Artists in Tuscany, United States Consulate, Florence, Italy
- Charles Cecil Studios 10th. Anniversary Show, Paul Mitchell Gallery, London, UK
- Realism III, Period Gallery, Nebraska, USA
1997 - North Shore Art League's Midwest Annual Print Show, Loyola University, Chicago, Illinois, USA
1996 - The Trickster, Around the Coyote Gallery, Chicago, Illinois, USA
1995 - Portrait/Self-Portrait, CWCA, Arc Gallery, Chicago, Illinois, USA
2015 -3rd Honorable Mention in the Portrait Society of America's Member's Only Competition.
- Best Overall Oil award the recent December, 2015/January, 2016 bimonthly PleinAir Salon competition.
2014 -1st Place at the Oak Park Art League’s Artist Member Show.
- 1st Honorable Mention and 9th Merit Award the Portrait Society of America’s
- Member’s Only Competition, Sculpture and Commission portrait respectively.
- Finalist in the Figurative Category at the Art Renewal Center’s Annual Salon
- Honorable Mention at the Oak Park Art League’s Member’s Only Competition
2013 - Finalist in Sculpture at the Art Renewal Center's Annual Salon
- Merit award for Commissioned Portrait in the Portrait Society of America's Member's Only Competition
2012 - Award of Exceptional Merit in the Portrait Society of America's International Competition
- 2nd place at the Oak Park Art League's 2nd National Carriage House Exhibition
- 2nd place at the 4th National Juried Catholic Art Competition and Exhibition, St. Vincent's College
- Honorable Mention in the Self Portrait (sculpture) category for the Portrait Society of
- America's Member's Only Competition
- Finalist in Sculpture in the Art Renewal Center's Annual Salon
- Finalist in the Mythological category in the American Society of Traditional Artist's Annual show
2011 - Merit award for Non-commissioned Portrait in the Portrait Society of America's Member's Only Competition
- Bedi-Makky prize, National Sculpture Society's 78th Annual Awards Exhibition
2010 - First place for sculpture Utrecht Art 2nd Annual Art Competition
2009 - First place for sculpture in the Portrait Society of America's Members’ showcase
2008 - Honorable Mention in the Portrait Society of America's Members' showcase
2014 - The Dancing Faun of Pompeii: Removed from Habitat, Out of Context, The Epoch Times/Arts Speaks, May 20.
2013 - The Vatican Laocoon Group: Death and Rebirth, The Epoch Times/Arts, October 14
- Contribution to the sculpture section, Memory Drawing, Darren Rousar, Velatura Press LLC,
2013 - Interview with art critic, Rodrigo Canete for his blog: Love Art Not People
2012 - Il Quotidiano della Basilicata, July 1, interview in Italian
2010 - American Artists’ Drawing magazine (summer)
2008 - Diario Irsinese, Anno XIV Numerio 87 Settembre-Ottobre 2008
- The Magnifacat, 19: 3 (summer)
2004 - American Artists’ Drawing magazine (fall)
- Realism Now: Traditions & Departures, Vose Gallery (exh. cat)
2006 - Return to Florence, (documentary film), interview feature.
- MEAM: Museu Europeu d'Art Modern, Barcelona, Spain
- Museum of Sacred art of the Basilica of the Virgin Mary, Orlando Florida, USA
- Dr. Fred Hohler, President and founder of the Public Catalogue Foundation, UK
- Al Said collection, London and Muscat, Oman
- Instructor in Painting, Drawing & Sculpture, Charles H. Cecil Studios, Florence, 1999-present
- Sculptor and bronze finisher for Fonderia MC Arte, Florence, 2005-present.
- Michael LaConte Gallery, Chicago IL USA
- Principle Gallery, Charleston SC USA
- Galleria Cipriani, Florence Italy
Education (born: 1970)
1994-1996 - Charles H. Cecil Studios, Florence, Italy
1990 - The Art Institute of Chicago, USA
1989-1994 - University of Illinois, Chicago, USA BA in the History of Art and Architecture