By Jennifer Carroll
Matt Pecson paints iconic images in a very unique style. Elements of Impressionism, Expressionism, Neo-Dada, Abstract and Pop Art are combined to create contemporary pop art masterpieces.
However, Matt also has a tool that he uses which comes from deep within. Matt's work is influenced by a condition called “synesthesia”.
[sin-uh s-thee-zhuh, -zhee-uh, -zee-uh]
is a neurological phenomenon in which stimulation of one sensory or cognitive pathway leads to automatic, involuntary experiences in a second sensory or cognitive pathway. People who report such experiences are known as synesthetes.
In layman's terms, it's when one sense produces a reaction in another sense. For example, as when the hearing of a certain sound induces the visualization of a certain color, or letters of the alphabet producing certain scents. It's even used in our common vernacular when we say things like "cool color", "warm color" or "frozen silence".
Pecson described the feeling to Ken Haggerty from SarasotaDay. “It’s like painting while on LSD. I try to convey what I’m feeling, and what’s coming through. It’s very vibrational.”
"It's so hard to explain synesthesia," he said. "It's almost like letting the media dance to the music." he told Susan Rife from the Herald-Tribune.
There were many synesthetes in music, literature, art and design: Tori Amos, Sam Endicott, Mary J. Blige, Leonard Bernstein, Duke Ellington, Billy Joel, Franz Liszt, Marilyn Monroe, Vladimir Nabokov, Itzhak Perlman. Geoffrey Rush, Vincent Van Gogh, Eddie Van Halen, Stevie Wonder, Pharrell Williams, and Kanye West, just to name a few.
Others who were suspected of being synesthetic: Jimi Hendrix, Syd Barrett, Bob Dylan, Victor Hugo, John Meyer, Wassily Kandinsky, Frank Lloyd Wright, Nathaniel Hawthorne, Friedrich Nietzsche and Nikola Tesla. (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_people_with_synesthesia)
"I think it's a trait we all have, like a sixth sense. It's just something you have to access. Artists tend to have a free mind which allows it to flow" says Pecson. "While many synesthesia paintings I have seen recently are pure abstract, I prefer to incorporate concrete figurative elements in my pieces."
From the Susan Rife article: "I paint subjects that are important to me," he says as he works on a portrait of Hendrix in the garage, "Who Knows" from "Band of Gypsys" playing in the background. "I aspire to paint like Hendrix plays guitar," says Pecson.
For more information about Matt Pecson's work:
Etsy https://www.etsy.com/shop/mattpecson (original art)
Society6 http://society6.com/mattpecson (prints, home decor, etc.)