Matthew Cox

2008 Pew Fellow

Matthew Cox, 2008 Pew Fellow. Directed by Glenn Holsten.

“The paintings do reveal themselves. It’s almost like it knows what it wants to be, and you’re just kind of standing there, waiting for it to tell you.”

Matthew Cox (b. 1961) creates psychologically charged figurative paintings that are technically ambitious as well as visually intriguing. He constructs narratives that seem to often contain elements of comedy and parody. He is interested in elevating the ordinary occurrences in our every day lives, and transforming these common events from banal to beautiful. One of his series was created first through text about a fictional criminal family called the Wonderfuls. He later pared down the writing to essential sentences and created the Wonderful Family portraits, each accompanied by its text.

Cox’s solo exhibits include Recovery: Embroidered X-Rays at Finer Things Gallery, Nashville, TN; Seated Figures: Laps and Illustrated Sentences at the Jonathan Ferrara Gallery, New Orleans, LA; and Painted, Stamped and Stitched at the Aron Packer Gallery, Chicago, IL. He has received awards from the New Orleans Art Association, the New World Festival of the Arts, and was named a fellow from the Louisiana Division of the Arts. His work is included in collections at the New Orleans Museum of Art, LA, as well as the Georgetown College of Art, KY.


This project investigated various issues surrounding (co-)authorship in cultural production, asking questions around definitions of authorship, collaboration, audience participation, the influence of marketplace, and other concepts.

The Barnes Foundation presents a series of artist lectures and gallery talks.

The University of Pennsylvania Libraries, in collaboration with the Wharton Esherick Museum and the Architectural Archives at the University of Pennsylvania, presented the first major examination of Esherick’s work and artistic development in over 50 years.

Questions of Practice

We asked the 2013 Pew Fellow poets to share samples of their work. Watch Jenn McCreary read selections from “Haunted Forest,” a passage from her recent book & now my feet are maps.

Paul Evans: Crossing Boundaries and Crafting Modernism, which opens on March 1 at the Michener Art Museum, is featured in the New York Times.

Grants & Grantees

Since 1980, Susan Hess Modern Dance has sought to grow the audience for contemporary dance and support independent dance artists in the Philadelphia community.

Collaborators & Colleagues

Kenneth Goldsmith is the author of 10 books of poetry, a senior editor of PennSound, and the first participant in the Center’s Push Me, Pull You project.

Grants & Grantees

The Institute of Contemporary Art plans to organize the first major retrospective to situate four decades of Barbara Kasten’s photography in relationship to other areas of artistic practice.

The Michener Art Museum presents a series music performances and dance workshops that capture the spirit of the 1920s.

Grants & Grantees

Carol Antrom is a musician and a 1999 Pew Fellow.

Grants & Grantees

John Blake, Jr. (1947–2014, Pew Fellow, 2010) took his inspiration as a contemporary jazz violinist and composer from some of the genre’s greats.

Collaborators & Colleagues

Ashon Crawley is an Assistant Professor of African American Studies in the Ethnic Studies Department at the University of California, Riverside.