Working with a variety of modes—ranging from figuration to abstraction, from Impressionist landscapes to jagged, stylized depiction of urban vistas—Maribel Matthews captures the often faded joys scattered throughout the world around her. Working predominantly with oil on canvas (though sometimes also using techniques like collage, or the quick-drying medium of acrylic) Matthews’s color palette is as versatile as her compositional styles. Sometimes fanciful, sometimes ominous and foreboding, Matthews’s color choices are always well-suited to her chosen subject-matter.
Aptly titled Autumn, in this painting Matthews demonstrates how colors can be used to give an impression without depicting anything directly. Lingering somewhere between figuration and abstraction, this oil on canvas work depicts not so much leaves but the animation of leaves swept by wind. The color scheme Matthews works with doesn’t limit itself to the golds, oranges, and yellows typically associated with the fall. Instead, the presence of blue, green, and even an earthen brown gives the painting a more symbolic and literary aspect, as though the painting were a kind of commentary on her impression of the fall season.