“I want to show the world what people with autism can do!”
Matthew’s artwork bursts with bright colors and bold shapes, communicating the joy he feels when he is creating and transferring those positive feelings to the viewer. Diagnosed with autism at the age of 2, Matthew and his parents looked for different ways to help him express himself. His grandmother was an artist and around age 7 or 8, Matthew began shadowing her in her studio.
With his grandmother as his guide, Matthew began painting, learning different techniques of using brushes, palette knives and canvases, and studying the behavior of watercolors and acrylic paints. Art became a way to calm his thoughts and be more focused, as well as relax and ease his mind. Most importantly, Matthew could express himself better and share his thoughts and feelings without words.
Art quickly became a powerful tool for Matthew. As he grew up, he continued to color, paint, make his own crayons and explore artistic activities that helped him thrive. His signature style emerged quickly as well, as he continually was drawn towards bright colors and geometric shapes. Matthew’s process is very intuitive and introspective, so the intricacies of each piece depend on his mood and emotions.
Matthew does have different phases, where certain themes and colors emerge. Sometimes he gravitates towards watercolors because of their vivid hues. Over time, he has begun exploring painting larger as well as layering more shapes into his paintings. The depth and technique in his artwork has grown as he has grown into a young man.
One of Matthew’s favorite things about art is that it brings people together. He loves having art shows where friends, family and community members join together to appreciate his work. It is special for him to talk to his loved ones about his art and share the joy he feels with them. Overall, Matthew wants the viewer to feel happy when they see his work.
Additionally, Matthew wants everyone to know that people with disabilities are important and capable. He hopes that others will see his work and feel inspired to make their own art to help them express their internal feelings. For this reason, one of his dream projects is to have his art featured on stickers, socks, or other merchandise that people can buy and look at to make them happy and motivated each day!
Matthew is proud to have graduated high school and a transitional program for young adults living with disabilities. He has worked several jobs in his community, including Pawsability, where he helps make and package dog treats to sell to his community. Additionally, Matthew has been working in the kitchen and library of his former high school.
When Matthew isn’t working or creating, he enjoys walking his dogs with his parents, doing puzzles, watching movies and playing games with his family. He has participated in the Special Olympics and enjoys being involved in fundraising events for his community. Additionally, he has an autobiographical memory, and can tell you the dates of any movie he’s watched, trip he’s taken, person he’s met or event he has been to! ArtLifting is thrilled to represent Matthew and showcase the beauty he brings to the world.read more
Prints by Matthew Breedlove
ArtLifting champions artists impacted by homelessness or disabilities through the celebration and sale of their artwork. Learn more here.