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Art Watch : Camilo Matiz

Camilo Matiz is our Art Watch Artist for today. This section is brought to you by Art From Us and Divvya Nirula. The Artists we spotlight here can be from any field, across nay discipline, and using a variety of media. We share here why we think they are important and worth watching. Be it genius creators of eras gone by. Or the upcoming contemporary artist who is yet to have their first show. All come under the purview of Art Watch. 

Born in Bogota Colombia in 1976, Camilo Matiz has successfully explored multi-disciplinary forms to create art. Through cinematography, writing, photography and film.

Famous for his light sculptures that literally hold the mirror and shed the light on reality, and provide a closer look into mass media. He believes in confronting the viewer with the duality of what is seen and its underlying meaning. The mediums of his choice make it easy for him to work in these spheres. In his installations there are three components – the neon writing, its reflection and the reflection of the viewer. Each contributes to the final sensation one feels when standing in front of the work.

In one sense, Camilo’s installations are playful and full of imagination. He uses the trope of reflection. And through it constantly challenges viewers with the meaning of the words and the possibilities of its reflection. It is a work which –in his words– is 70% made up by the viewer’s experience, and this where the brilliance of the artist lies. The intrinsic simplicity and complex and layered thought that goes into making it.

Why Camilo Matiz?

This satirical study of reflection takes bright neon signs and finds their honest hidden messages. “Take a Selfie” becomes “Fake a Life”, or “Believe You Can” turns into “Lie To Yourself Anyway”. The artist showcases that peoples’ lives often reflect their inherent desires of the heart even if they try to hide everything.

Matiz, unveiled his series, “Here Not There, ” a study of reflection, in 2015. His sculptures, with mirrors and text, play with an idea of the ‘real-self’ v/s the ‘performance-self’. For Matiz the conflict between our critical mind, our wants and desires. The higher purpose of our soul seems to be at the center of this work. Perception, reality and acceptance of both are what this work to me is about. There are many who have entered the field of light installations. But few have had the firm grip on the theoretical understand and the application of the medium as effectively.

Matiz is not only Artist, but a Film-maker, Director and Writer as well, he has been shown in international art exhibitions such as Scope, Miami and Barcu Art Fair, Bogota. In 2009, his artistic film, “1989, ” achieved the Official Selection in Semaine de la Critique in Cannes as the closing film for the festival.

However, despite such recognition, and distinction, Matiz chose not to publicly screen or distribute the film. Only 6 copies in 35mm were made and signed by the artist. His artistic expressions through film, photography and other media, have been given several awards including ‘Top Trending artwork Art Basel Miami’ 2015, ‘Cannes Lions, shortlist’, ‘London International Magazine Awards’ among others.


For more Artists handpicked by Divvya Nirula – explore the ART WATCH archive.

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