Mathew Calandra

Mathew Calandra has an unmistakable and arresting linear style. Sharp, sinuous, awkward and dynamic, his linework has been likened to that of Egon Schiele, the great symbolist-expressionist artist of the late nineteenth century. Like Schiele, Mathew transforms banal subject matter into something of deep mystical beauty.

Mathew works mainly in etching, drawing and gouache, and draws inspiration from everyday life, ancient fables and horror films. “I like to use pen and pencil,” says Mathew. “I draw using pens and technical markers. I paint them using ink and wash. Sometimes, I do hand sewing.”

Freddy Kruger is featured in many of his early pieces. In more recent works, he focuses on people from the real world reimagined as folkloric figures, as in Artist as Pharaoh after Theodore Wohng by Pei Pei He (2018).

Mathew’s curriculum vitae documents an exhibition history that includes both national and international curated exhibitions in Holland (Galerie Atelier Herenplaats, Rotterdam) and Sydney (Cement Fondu, Grace Cossington Smith Gallery). In 2021, his triptych, Stations of the Cross, was selected for the Sulman Prize for subject painting at the Art Gallery of New South Wales.

Mathew has undertaken residencies at the prestigious Cicada Press within UNSW Art & Design and Red Room Poetry. At UNSW he worked alongside significant Australian artists, such as the likes of Reg Mombassa, Elisabeth Cummings and Vernon Ah-Kee. Mathew’s works are held in the permanent collections of the Art Gallery of New South Wales and Artbank.

- Portrait by Scott Heldorf

Artist CV Mathew Calandra - CV
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