New York

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Matthew Starr (born 1989) is a New Media Artist living and working in New York City.[1]

Early life[]

Matt Starr was born in Maplewood, New Jersey to Jerold Starr and Pamela Keen, where he attended Columbia High School. After graduating from high school Matt spent a year in Israel to serve in the Israeli Defense Forces. After leaving the army, Starr travelled throughout the Middle East and Europe, visiting places such as Ethiopia, Morocco, Budapest, Poland, Prague, England, France, and others. During this time Starr was introduced to documentary filmmaking. This introduction had a profound effect on Starr and eventually became his first creative outlet.

Life and work[]

Starr entered Indiana University in the Fall of 2008 with a self-designed major titled "Documentary Films That Can Change the World" with a minor in Swahili. Starr became disenchanted with documentary film and decided to explore a form of expression that could reach and affect more diverse audiences. At this time Starr enrolled in history classes that introduced him to La Nouvelle Vague and the Downtown Avant Garde which Starr says completely changed the course of his life. These movements resonated with Starr’s outlook on art and his belief that art could be anything and exist anywhere. From these roots, Starr’s theoretical art practice grew.

Starr’s art is designed around the idea of a complete and total experience, rather than screen-based art. His art is multidisciplinary and multifaceted and includes an array of New Media technologies, including 3D-Projection Mapping. Starr often explores themes dealing with low brow culture and our society’s collective tendency to obsess over and indulge in these guilty pleasures. He is attracted to and captivated by patterns and social behavior, such as a piece constructed in early 2014 combining the skeleton of an iPhone and a projector to create an IRL 'in real life' selfie generator.[2]Template:Not in citation[3]

Many of Starr's projects and ideas explore social media culture and often designs his projects around a perceived online presence, rather than focusing on audience reaction in the gallery setting. Starr is also noted for often having his parents attend his art events.[4] A crucial component of Starr’s work involves working with existing architecture in order to re-contextualize, transform, and recreate spaces. One such project, Matt and Taylor’s Super Fun Magic Show, 2012 involved mapping projections onto a popular set of gates in Bloomington, Indiana.[5]

Since moving to New York City in the summer of 2013[6] Starr has worked with commercial clients as well as artists such as Kenneth Willardt, and The W Hotels.[7] At the end of 2013 Starr founded the “ : ) ” gang,[8] an art collective based in NYC that produces events in line with Starr's interest in 'total experiences' noted above.

In 2014 Starr was invited to participate in the DKNY sponsored art show, "New Art City" curated by Carlos Santollala and John Tuite. For the show Starr designed an immersive installation of his lifestyle brand "diet". Matt Starr's back room installation that featured mini trampolines, a treadmill, and various items that all bore the word "DIET" in stark, white lettering. A gorgeous view of blue skies and white clouds were also projected onto the walls so that guests had ample time to get in there #NWTS selfies in while burning calories on that treadmill. [9] David Graver of Cool Hunting said, "An entire room showcases the work of artist Matt Starr, where he has given life to a thematically ambitious wonderland of downtown cleanliness. There, a yoga goddess dangles over a grassy knoll and a full juice bar touts a clean lifestyle (though that bar will be serving rum during the event). Starr was asked to center his installation on the downtown scene, and its role almost as an urban oasis." [10]

Selected Projects[]

  • DKNY New Art City: designed an immersive 800ft representation of a lifestyle brand with workout machinery and a juice fountain painted over in gleaming sanitized white
  • The Limited F#cking TOO: a re-imagining of 90s teen girl clothing store The Limited 2 as a total immersive new media experience
  • Tinder Art: using dating websites for artistic expression and artistic networking
  • Size Does Matter: a collaboration with photographer Kenneth Willardt using building architecture to debut a new photo series
  • ZORB: an immersive audio-visual experience inside an inflatable orb, suspended in water



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