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Introducing Upward's 2019 Artist-In-Residence, Miguel Jose Matos

Hartford resident Miguel Jose Matos launched his inaugural Artist In Residence collection in January 2019

Color. Stroke. Contrast.

These are the characteristic elements of Miguel Jose Matos' abstract paintings, now on long-term display at Hartford's premier coworking, office, & meeting space, Upward Hartford.

Otoño - Acrylic on Canvas - 40"x30" - $245 via the Upward Hartford app

Matos is the first local artist to be selected for Upward's Artist In Residence Program, which features rotating works from a single artist over the course of a calendar year. The program's mission is to serve as a “home base” for the Artist In Residence to display their favorite works or new pieces, while also providing the Upward community with an in-house gallery of work from which they can derive inspiration and directly purchase for their office or home.

Matos is no stranger to Upward's Gallery program; his works have been exhibited both at a live art show and Hispanic Heritage Month pop-up exhibit within Upward's mezzanine coworking space. Now, his works will adorn Upward's second-floor office & conference room hallway in a semi-permanent installation through December 2019.

The Artist In Residence collection is displayed on Upward’s upper-level of the

mezzanine coworking, office, and conference room space from

January through December. All works are available for purchase via the marketplace on Upward Hartford's new mobile app for iOS and Android.

About the artist:

Born in Oxfordshire, England, and raised on the island of Puerto Rico through high school, Miguel attended Boston University, where he studied political science and finance. After college, he worked in the field of real estate banking. Mr. Matos’ latest job was within the city of Hartford’s chief executive office, where he served as a manager.

In November 2015, Miguel’s painting adventure begin on Microsoft paint with digital drawings. With no formal art training/education except serving as an assistant to renowned artist Kike Estrada during college, art started as more of a hobby. That year, his godson and daughter - both formally trained artists - urged him to bring the digital drawings to life on canvas. Upon their suggestion, he hasn’t stopped painting since.

As his interest in art grew, Miguel wanted to learn about famous artists. Basquiat really caught his eye, and after watching the film Radiant Child, Basquiat would become one of his biggest inspirations. As he continued cultivating his art skills, Miguel enjoyed imitating Basquiat’s work. Through these imitations, Miguel’s own style emerged and he began to do his own thing. He “lets his hand follow the brush,” and never goes into a piece knowing what the end result will be. The final look of each piece is a surprise to himself and his family.

A 20+ year resident of Hartford, this is Miguel’s 4th public exhibit within the Hartford arts scene.

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