Matt Hopson-Walker earned a BFA in printmaking from Kansas City Art Institute and holds both a MA and MFA in Printmaking from the University of Iowa School of Art and Art History. His works are held in over 47 collections worldwide and Hopson-Walker has an extensive international and national show history spanning over 13 years. Hopson-Walker’s works have been recognized in numerous publications and he has collaborated as a visiting artist with over a dozen universities/colleges nationally. Throughout the years, Hopson-Walker has been selected for the Ox-Bow Fellowship as well as residencies at the Stonehouse Residency for Contemporary Arts and Muhlenberg College in Allentown, PA. Hopson-Walker’s most recent awards include Best of Show in the Arts Visalia National Juried Exhibition, receiving the Juror’s Selection for Print Zero Studios in Chicago, an Honorable Mention in the Maryland Federation of Art’s 30th Annual Art on Paper Circle Gallery and Best of Show in the Merced Annual California Centered Printmaking Exhibition. Currently, Hopson-Walker works as an Assistant Professor in the Department of Art and Design at Fresno State University.
Hopson-Walker’s art is inspired by the complexities of adulthood as filtered through the moralizing and exaggerated emotions of childhood entertainment: video games, the Three Stooges, heavy metal, and comic books like the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. These works of fiction use over-the-top or exaggerated emotion to belabor a point. Beyond reinforcing a narrative, the action in these stories reflects negative emotions that are often sublimated in social situations where maintaining harmony is prized over honest expression. He is very interested in the consequences of having conflicting thoughts or engaging in behavior that contradicts personal, social, or moral responsibility when those animal motives that are said to lurk beneath human ones run rampant as selfish disregard, wonton laziness, and willful ignorance.
Fables, mythology, and folk tales have often explored similar territory to explain detrimental elements of the human character with graphic detail. Like release valves of posturing, these seemingly random stories often unmasking of the selfish intent laying within altruism or revealing the brute behind the human intellect. His images document personal experience, social hierarchies he’s navigated, and people as darkly psychological beings. With his images; printmaking, collage, and drawing techniques and materials are employed in a way that he relates metaphorically to the function of memory and experience. The process of how his images are made is an important part of the existential quandary his work is grappling with.
Gallery of Work