Featured Artist for June in Equestrian Network Magazine!

Equestrian Network Magazine Artist of the month for June/08

Follow the link: http://www.equestmagazine.com/article-artist-06.php

I will also paste in the text here:

Artist of The Month: Matt Torrens
by M. Y. Mim
Matt Torrens builds them big. His monumental pieces are at least life-size and primarily built from driftwood.

"I have been sculpting my whole life, from carving driftwood on the beach as a kid, to studying it throughout school," said Matt.


The laborious process of creating these immense pieces begins with finding the right piece of driftwood.

"I usually start with a certain piece that draws in my imagination, giving me the inspiration to build a unique piece of art. The process is a long one. I first start by collecting all kinds of
driftwood. Once I get it back to the studio I sort through it, looking for unique shapes that help make up my mind of what to build. Then I start assembling multiple pieces forming the image in my mind. I pre-drill all the holes then screw the wood together. When the piece is completed, I cover the screw heads with wood filler and paint them to try and match each individual piece of wood. Finally I cover the piece with a clear coat to protect it from the elements."
The spaciousness within the driftwood lends an airiness that contrasts pleasantly with the great bulk of the massive pieces. Matt's work stuns audiences and forces viewers to contemplate the contradiction of lightness and heft.

Artist Matt Torrens next to his driftwood sculpture "California King."

Matt Torrens collecting driftwood for his sculptures.
The piece entitled "Whiskeytown," for example presents an anatomically correct full-sized horse with a slight, natural rear bend as the horse faces to its right. Whiskeytown is as correct as anything by George Stubbs. Movement in the horse is suggested not only by the posture, but also the careful placing of the driftwood pieces. Parts of Whikeytown appear to be transparent, adding further to the illusion of immediate possible flight. The casual viewer expects Whiskeytown to come trotting over for a treat.

Although driftwood remains Matt's primary medium, he first presented as an equine artist in 2003 - 2004 when he built, completely out of silverware, his first life-sized horse. This stunning silver sculpture includes a 10-foot wing span and is named "Pegasus."


Asked what inspires him, Matt said "I love that the materials I use that go unnoticed by the everyday eye. They are overlooked and discarded, with no other thought given to them. It is through these unique pieces that I am able to materialize one moment of my imagination." Certainly, creating

Pegasus from silver trays and knives demonstrates his claim.

"Buckhorn," driftwood sculptures by Matt Torrens.
Matt grew up in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, "Here we have the Calgary Stampede (The largest outdoor show on earth). I attended the show yearly and I guess subconsciously was affected by the horses. Now living in Northern California, there are horses in the front pasture for me to draw inspiration from."
Matt Torrens' "Pegasus" on display
Matt recently received a first-place award for Best Overall Collection at the grand National Art and Horse

Show, held in April of this year at the San Francisco Cow Palace. This large, prestigious show included some 300 pieces of invitation-only equine and Western art. To win first among all the many high-quality pieces is a true honor.

Four pieces, Three driftwood sculpture and a silver Pegasus
by Matt Torrens.
Another view of Matt Torrens' driftwood sculpture "Spirit."
Artist Matt Torrens loading a sculpture for the Grand National Art Show and Sale, April 2008.
Artist Matt Torrens working on his sculpture "Woodstock."
Matt Torrens' driftwood sculpture "Woodstock," side view.
Matt Torrens' driftwood sculpture "Woodstock," face view.

For the future. Matt "plans to showcase my art through various Western art shows this year and see where that takes me."

We predict it will take him far.

Posted on June 02, 2008 by Matt Torrens

Am studying your artwork at school and am trouble finding when The Driftwood Cow was produced?

Posted on August 17, 2009 by Jack Lyons

The Cow "Trinity" was made in early 2009 as a Commission and installed in March 2009.

Posted on August 31, 2009 by Matt