Inspired by sci-fi and fantasy imagery as well as folklore, music, and pop culture, Matt Darst creates highly detailed, complex dioramas with accompanying mixed media backdrop paintings. During the pandemic, this creative endeavor became a release — occupying time and providing an opportunity to exert some form of control…albeit of a miniature universe.
Matt’s works represent frozen narratives, or “tableaus,” open to the individual interpretation of the viewer.
He uses a mixture of media to create each diorama, incorporating acrylic and spray paint and everything from broken train model parts to everyday household items. Backdrop paintings enhance each diorama’s other-worldly atmosphere and rotating bases plus magnifying glasses give viewers an in-depth view of the curious scenes.
Matt has been creative since childhood when his curiosity, problem-solving, artistic skills, and imagination were encouraged and nurtured by his father, who is a painter, and his mother, who was a potter. In addition to being an artist, Matt is also a published author of two books, he makes music, and is an award-winning innovator in the transportation industry.
Matt is committed to supporting cancer treatment research. Half of his proceeds from the sale of his art will be donated to Stand Up to Cancer.