A witty poke at modern day pop culture with the usage of historical monuments, Melbourne artist Matthew Quick’s oil-based paintings seemingly provokes today’s capitalistic ideals of excess with his series Monumental Nobodies. A running theme across the entire series is his poignant focus on the concept of empires and the drawbacks and cultural side effects that exist within the system. For example, the use of George Washington in The Land of the Free piece where he is depicted astride his horse while sporting several CCTVs is a clear indication of the artist’s commentary on the United State’s absurd level of nationalism that has evolved into the state of paranoia with constant surveillance onto its own people. Such commentaries are repeated throughout the series with uses of other historical figures such as Julius Caeser, the Queen of England, and more.
The inspiration for this series was birthed when Quick was travelling through his wife’s homeland of Penang (seriously though? Shout out to our favourite island for inspiring arts and shit),where he came across an out of place statue of the 19th Century British Queen Victoria, which he then used for the piece Crowning Glory. The piece speaks on how the feels that the people of Penang have slowly swept away traces of colonialism simply by ignoring the statue.
Check out more of his stuff here.