May 9, 2016

Seeing Art and Design Everywhere: An Interview with Matt Moore

by: Carly Rapaport-Stein

As founder of MWM Graphics, Matt Moore dubbed his digital abstract style ‘Vectorfunk’ early on in his career, and has been working at the intersection of art and design ever since. This year, Matt’s also been a part of our Art Education program, and he took time to sit down with us and reflect on his experiences in working with the really awesome students in our program.

Carly: Tell me a little bit about yourself.

Matt: I am a graphic artist working across disciplines, and my education focused on graphic design and new media. I run a design studio called MWM Graphics, a home goods line called Core Deco, and an apparel company called Glyph Cue. I always strive to cross-pollinate concepts, aesthetics, and techniques from one field to the next. My work in fine art informs the projects I do for public art and collaborations, and my explorations in design often lead to new approaches in my personal work for galleries and in-situ murals and installations. I live and work to the mantra, “Range is conducive to growth.”

Carly: What drew you to working with Mural Arts?

Matt: It was a real honor to be selected for this project. It is always a pleasure to see what you guys are working on. And it was awesome to tour around the city and see the massive masterpieces that Mural Arts has supported all around the city. I had no idea that there were so many murals in Philly! For the past couple years, Phil (a Mural Arts staff member in the Art Education program) and I have been bouncing ideas for a mural and class workshop. We decided that it would be great to make a mural and curriculum that combined my different areas of focus: graphic design, typography, and painting big walls.

Carly: What were some of your favorite things to create with the Mural Arts students?

Matt: We did two workshops with different groups of kids, each for two afternoons. Both were a lot of fun. The first group worked with spraypaint and masking tape to create artworks that explored the possibilities of clean lines and transparent layers of color. With the second group we organized a walk-around downtown taking photos of things in the urban environment that looked like abstract letterforms. For example, a bike tire for an O, and an ornate stairwell railing that had hidden letters inside of the forms. Then we worked together in the classroom to create an entire functional alphabet in vector graphics. This was super fun and the final set of letters works really well and is very unique and specific to the vibe of these few blocks of downtown we explored and photographed.

Carly: Was there anything that surprised you about working with this set of students?

Matt: It’s always great to work with kids and see them get in the zone of creativity. Kids are the best artists! I was especially impressed by the group that went on the alphabet hunt. Everyone found some really clever forms for each letter, and since it was a group effort it was great to see everyone working together, making sure we had all 26 letters covered and illustrated.

Carly:  What’s the next project you’re excited about working on?

Matt: After a long winter I am excited for the warm and sunny months ahead. I have a bunch of large murals and in-situ public installation projects lined up for this summer. And as always, I will continue to paint walls, big and small, just for fun!

Love Matt’s work? Check out his Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter. And don’t forget to come out and see all of the fantastic work of our super Art Education students this week at The Really Awesome Art Show!

Photography is provided courtesy of Matt Moore and Steve Weinik.

Last updated: Jun 1, 2016

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