Friday, March 13, 2009

Lunch: Matt Rota

One of our favorite young artists came to lunch today, Matt worked for us for us for a year when he was working on his masters at School of Visual Arts. It was a time when it was an unpaid internship and Matt still showed up and gave it his all. He also was good about introducing us to new artists on the web and working with us on a variety of internal projects--he accepted the most mundane assignments without complaint. Matt graduated with a BFA from Maryland Institute of Art and Design (MICA) before coming to New York for the SVA program. 

Originally from upstate New York, Matt was drawn to illustration and while still a student promoted his work to Brian Rea who was at the New York Times Op-Ed page. And it paid off, Matt has had nearly a dozen op-ed pieces in the Times, quite an accomplishment for someone barely out of school. His complex, sensitive line drawings explore the human condition. His reportorial work has the freedom of line coupled with the realism of the moment. His effortless character studies can evoke an almost tranquil time but often with a sudden twist that takes it beyond the obvious. Matt had his first taste of teaching last year and throughly enjoyed it--teaching at MICA one day a week was an experience he wouldn't mind repeating. As far as work goes, like many it's slowed down, several large advertising projects which would have had him wrapped up for the next twelve months were shelved. But he's actively working on a new promotional campaign and staying busy with assignments. We appreciate his support of 3x3 and he did get a paying assignment from us last year for our Good But Cheap Eats book we did for ICON5 distribution. We hope to work with him again...soon.