Rui Matos (b. 1959), a famous Portuguese sculptor, is certain that a sculptor both works with reality and creates his own reality at the same time. Sculpture for him is a work on memory as all culture is.
From 1980 to 1987 he studied the art of sculptor in Lisbon, where he soon became the best and most promising student. It was evident as early as beginning of 90s that Matos is a new revelation in art. Nowadays his works can be found in Portugal and across Europe. In 2022 a huge retrospective of his works was organized in Tavira, including two of his main creations “The Sequences of Days” and “Heavy Silences”.
Together with Booroom Gallery, for the past several years Rui Matos has been creating iron sculptures. He loves experimenting with metal, which became his main material after decades of working with clay, stone and plaster. Oxidized or painted iron is his main working tool. “In recent years I have worked almost exclusively in iron, because I feel that this material best reflects my art vision and my ideas”, — he says, adding that he was greatly influenced by Russian constructivism with sculpture being its highlight and metal being one of the most expressive materials.
“All my acquired knowledge, all my life experience, all the sensations and feelings I had cannot directly and rationally generate a work of art. However, all this, after being temporarily forgotten, reappears when the idea of a new sculpture unexpectedly arises. The idea is always the same, to breathe a breath of life, energy and spirituality into a cold and amorphous matter. Transform matter into a new being. Art is not just form and design is not just function. They are our affective connection to the world we inhabit. Artists carry an ancestral culture with them, but at the same time fully live their time”, — says the artist.