Matt Rebholz

Available Works

Adjunct Lecturer at Southwestern University, Matt Rebholz is rooted in a figurative tradition that explores a narrative sensibility laden with a combination of violence, mordant humor, and social consciousness.

Recent Exhibition: Introductions 2010, June 2010

The Golem Project

The Golem project is a suite of twenty etchings inspired by the tale of the Frankenstein-esque figure from Jewish folklore. Perhaps the best known of the Jewish legends, the Golem is an automaton, usually made from mud or clay and created through an intense and systematic mystical process. In Hebrew, the word golem refers to something unformed and imperfect, and implies a body without a soul. The narrative arc of the prints is a loose re-imagining of the 1915 Gustav Meyrink novel Der Golem, in which the title character wanders the streets of a corrupt and ruined city, blissfully unaware that he is a malfunctioning meat robot and not truly a man.

The prints are organized in a theatrical fashion, the spaces constructed as though they were the sets of a stage play and the players carefully arranged within them. Often the environments become more important than the figures, sometimes to their ultimate exclusion. These elements conspire to form a series of intimate, allegorical vignettes pregnant with obscenity and metaphor. The grotesque tableaux of The Golem serve as a polluted and uneasy dreamscape, peopled by a cast of damaged characters eager to do each other harm. Within this environment, the Golem himself can be read as a metaphor for humanity adrift in an absurd and dystopian world. As The Golem project ran its course, it deviated significantly from Meyrink’s original narrative, becoming less and less concerned with the original storyline. As it metastasized and evolved thematically, the imagery became increasingly concerned with my own thoughts about contemporary society and the manifestations of consumption, ingestion and expulsion within it.

The Golem
Suite of twenty prints, Chapters I-XX
2006-2008
Edition 20
Intaglio and chine colle
8 x 6 inches each (image size)
Individual Impressions.  $300. each unframed
Complete box suite.  $5000.