Matt Waples

Matt Waples

Canada, born in 1992

Matt Waples’s concerns centre on the encounter between light and diverse photosensitive chemical compounds — the very process that spawned photography. For his series Colour Studies, Waples took as his starting point the dye transfer technique: developed in the second half of the twentieth-century, this colour-printing process requires layering three dye matrices (yellow, magenta, and cyan) onto baryta- or gelatine-coated receiver sheets. A lengthy and costly process originally taken up by the advertising industry and only later adopted by artists, it results in remarkably stable colour prints of impressive texture and depth. Waples co-opts this technique — which, since the papers employed are no longer manufactured, is today on the way out — to create pure visual abstractions. Separating the various elements required for photographic enlargement, here the three basic colour layers no longer resolve into a single figurative whole, but instead are arranged into perfectly geometrical compositions. By way of what is a deconstruction of photography’s most purely technical — and, hence, most eminently objective — building blocks, the artist questions the photographic act itself.  


Ryerson University, Toronto, Canada, since 2011



Matt Waples, from the series Colour Studies,
Dye transfers
8 x 6 cm
© Matt Waples

Artist of the day

Everyday at 3:15pm, for the first 50 days of the exhibition, discover the creative mind of each of the 50 artists in reGeneration3 through short videos and interviews. enjoy!

Watch the videos