Matthew Cox embroidered x-rays
American artist Matthew Cox has created a body of work that combines the traditional medium of embroidery with plastic x-ray films. Proportionally true to the body part being pictured, the injection of stitches often depict elements of flora in a dream-scape-like scenery. The wildly contrasting materials are together read as something new and different from their original purpose.
Redefinition motivates me to create my embroidered x-rays. The stark clash of two such divergent materials, cloth and plastic, is the simple catalyst. One tactile and labor intensive, the other technical, and quickly a finished product. There’s a wide historical context, one ancient, decorative, and artisan, the other contemporary and devoid of aesthetic intention. By simply placing one of these materials on top of the other the understood purpose of each is redefined”.
“For me, stitching has a nurturing aspect and acts as care giving or healing to the injured, a socially feminine sort of action, while the x-ray itself can be considered masculine and unemotional. Finally, my own recognition of what is beautiful [these separately became appealing to me at about the same time]. As an artist who takes on tedious, labor-intensive projects, I am also reacting to the ever-increasing presence of photography in contemporary art – by introducing the process of labor over the quick, slickness of film”.