Matt Connors Swap

6 March3 April 2021

44 rue Van Eyck | Van Eyckstraat

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Xavier Hufkens is delighted to present a new series of paintings, works on paper and a photographic work by American artist Matt Connors (b. 1973, Chicago). Swap is Connors’ third exhibition with the gallery.

Swap; start with two things.

With the scene in a jewel heist film, where a heavy, dirt-filled leather bag is
placed on a sensitive pedestal in place of a sought-after treasure, which one then runs away with.
Maybe the dirt from the bag is spilling everywhere, really stressing the not-there-
ness, essential to the prize-ness, of the prize. And the jewel is sharp-edged, getting streaked
and smudged with the dirt and the sweat in hands and pockets.
And one has both. One is both.


Is it more like a rotating door? This supplementing, this one that runs away,

those large wood or glass pivot doors that turn on a central axis and so
have no front or back, are all front, all back, all turn.
A switch, a role reversal, two sides of the imaged equation meet at a bar: head-tails-head
tails-head-tails-head, like a spinning coin flashing its sequence with only modulation between
faces, a constant, invisible series of repetitions and adjustments that accompany inherent
gaps or failures in any effort to really, truly repeat,
summoning and shaking out some sort of new form and form’s (and new’s) opposite.
What painting trades back and forth are these
figures and gestures and ideas and sources as functions and tunings and bargains and re-
commencements. The idea is to make two and fuck with one.
That’s three things.
And where we started was dirty in a good way: one who supplants one and one who plants one on one, who
swaps with one, passes it back and forth for taste, makes it twice—how you start is how you finish (painting).
Maybe recursion is a lover’s conspiracy in that the object (image) is collision, a sort of setting into motion, subjunctively.

— Text by Amelia Stein and Matt Connors

Matt Connors lives and works in New York. He is scheduled to have a solo exhibition at Lismore Castle Arts, Ireland, later this year. Other exhibitions include: Painter, Painter at the Walker Art Center, Minneapolis (2013), Impressionism, MoMA PS1, New York (2012), Gas... Telephone... One Hundred Thousand Rubles, Kunsthalle Düsseldorf, Germany (2011) and Concentrations 54: Matt Connors and Fergus Feehily, Dallas Museum of Art (2011). In 2012, Matt Connors received the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation Fellowship Grant and the Belgacom Art Prize. He published the award-winning book A Bell is a Cup that same year. Connors’ work is included in the following collections: Dallas Museum of Art; Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; MOMA, New York; Walker Arts Center, Minneapolis; and the San Antonio Museum of Art.

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