'Untitled (Hole)', Matthew Usmar Lauder

Painting of a ghostly silhouette of a child and another small being, leaning on each other

Oil on canvas, 61 x 45.7 cm, 2007

Artist's statement

It is the subjective and formative nature of our memory and understanding of the world that interests me. Through my work I aim to create ambiguity and construct a psychological space that requires interpretation. I start a piece of work with one or more ingredients, a feeling, a thought or a piece of information. This can take the form of a photograph, a film clip or perhaps something
I have read or heard. The source image might depict people, an individual or a space devoid of, but still saturated by, human presence. From there the development process is organic and accumulative.

I strip away and discard superfluous detail, with most information becoming purposely muted and/or veiled. I may still retain elements or certain characteristics that attracted me to the material in the first place: flash or low lighting, crude cropping, blurring or even elements of the chemical process of photography itself. The information behind the image exists layered within the fabric of the painting and is there to be found. If the viewer does not discover the information then he or she will bring their own ideas and insights to the table, based on their personal experiences and perspective. In this respect I see it as a shared continuation of the creative process.


Matthew Usmar Lauder was born in London in 1963. He studied at Camberwell College of Arts London 1982-6. His solo exhibitions include 'Matthew Usmar Lauder' Mobile Home Gallery London 2003, 'New Works' Fred [London] Ltd and Fred [Leipzig] Ltd 2007, with a further show 'Fable Fred' [London] Ltd forthcoming in 2008. He featured in groups exhibitions 'Art and Architecture' BA Headquarters London 2003, ' BP Portrait Award' 2003 National Portrait Gallery London, 'Summer Exhibition'
Royal Academy London 2003 and 'Traditional But New' Binz And Krämer Gallery Cologne 2007.

Matthew Usmar Lauder website