Matthew Ivan Cherry

My artwork and creative process are inherently dependent on participants who are willing to volunteer as subjects. I have several projects that are ongoing (listed below). If you wish to participate in any way and be a subject for any of my projects, please contact me for instructions.

*somewhereX - a gay mormon portrait project - "because we exist" . I am looking for LGBTQ mormons (active, inactive or excommunicated) to document in titan-sized portrait paintings to show strength in solidarity, to portray the beauty and worth of individuals who have been able to weather feeling like an outcast or worse, due to being "other than" the norm and who have managed to get to the other side, through extraordinary sheer will and determination where they now experience peace, happiness, and wholeness living their truth despite a culture's unwillingness to accept and embrace, let alone tolerate or understand.

someBODIES - a nude portrait exhibition documenting people on location in specific cities around the world. Lets show the world that the HOLLYWOOD IDEAL is not our idea of what is beautiful! someBODIES depicts random people nude in direct, frontal and confrontational positions to be scrutinized by the viewer in a way that is matter of fact yet greater than or celebratory of, that shouts out and validates what is so unique about each of us, yet so universally shared by all of us. They challenge the notion that what is ideal and/or beautiful is not what Hollywood or magazines convey (or that we buy into)…but rather what nature and life provide. They are not nudes for the voyeur ... yet admittedly acknowledge the fact that they have subjected themselves to be looked at and scrutinized. The nudes that I create challenge the viewer. They do not wait for the chance of a second glance seen discreetly from the side of one’s glasses. They stand face forward confronting the viewer soliciting more than a casual gaze. They are positioned in a stance that make the viewer the object scrutinized. They stand blatantly aware, amassed together and force the audience to look within while looking at someBODIES. Decisions of size, scale, vantage point, and positions are the result of my interest to document history, location & time through the nude portrait of people that I meet on the streets, around the world and through social media who are willing to share their bodies and their lives in order for me to document the random beauty which one finds across humanity in direct “titan-sized” portraits. WANT TO HOST A someBODIES event? If you can gather 20-25 people who would pose for my nude portraits, I'll fly to you and we will throw a party while I document your friends to add to the someBODIES project

RAD - a bearded man project in quartets - The act of modifying one’s face to meet a standard of appropriateness by shaving is not so different than other forms of body modification ... it is just one that majority of men have adopted due to cultural norms of the clean shaven face as being professional, aesthetically pleasing and/or appropriate. Throughout history men with facial hair have been ascribed attributes with polar opposite distinctions; on one hand being wise, virile, masculine, holy and on the other; wild, untamed, dirty, of ill repute, or a part of a sub-culture and/or radical intent. It is the very notion of what is defined as being “radical” that intrigues me. On one side you have men in radically conservative and/or religious cultures such as; Amish, Mennonite, Hassidic Judaism, Islamic and Muslim followers, and Sikhs who grow beards as signs of holiness and reverence. On the opposite side of the spectrum you have men in subculture contexts like; bikers, hipsters, rockers, hippies, bears, tree huggers, people of the streets and even academics. Whether conservative or liberal, both sit on opposite sides of of males representing the “mainstream” e.g. from doctors to lawyers or bankers to Mormon Missionaries. The Corporate America “clean” cut look has been adopted and held in high esteem for appropriateness. For this reason I have become intrigued by those who sport a beard for my series RAD (short for radical). If you are a dude and are wearing a beard and are willing to modify or document the growth from a clean shaven face to full growth...or if you change the style and are willing to document it for me...please email me to contribute to the project and I will add your face to my RAD series. Lend me your beard BROTHERS! SHow me your RAD-ical!

MO - I started this series having just cut my hair into a mohawk as a way to identify with my two sons who both did the same; one who had just left home for college and one who was just about to. It was in defiance of my having to let them go; my little rebellion of becoming an empty nester, however slow the process. DO YOU HAVE A MOHAWK? Let me paint you. Punk hawk (colored or dyed), 12" high Liberty spikes, deathhawk, psychobilly or quiff, frohawk, chelsea hawk, dreadhawk, lazy hawk, fanhawk, rayhawk, warhawk, shark fin, V-Cut, reverse mohawk, nohawk, hawkmo, fauxhawk, eurohawk, ponyhawk, curly hawk, beavertails, dread-hawks, emo-hawks, twin fins, etc... WHATEVER YOUR STYLE ... if you ROCK IT ... I WANT IT!

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