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MATT BROWN. Reinventing Reality

Author: Luisa Bernal

Section: LAB

Date: 12.2011

 

Matt Brown introduces himself as a designer from Michigan currently living in Genoa, Italy.
But how did he get here?, what does a little boy dream of becoming be when he grows up, when as an adult he devotes himself to reinventing reality as if indefinitely prolonging the playtime traditionally confined to childhood? When Matt Brown was little he had a collection for everything. ‘When I was very focused on one, I thought I would carry on collecting it for the rest of my life. So I wanted to be things like a geologist, coin collector, or explorer. For some time I wanted to be an accountant to follow statistics’.

Matt contextualizes each of the objects and stories he recreates in this manner, achieving that the limits between fiction and reality disappear. Here I discuss some of his works with him:

Food and the future of It was his graduation project at the Swedish Design University, Umea.
‘I wanted to make a project that would move many feelings and something related to food seemed exciting to me. What is more, I love food – good food and junk food -. I also love science fiction and at that time I was in the process of watching all the Star Trek films with my friend Mikko. In class we used the method of «brainstorming» to define our projects and I did mine in a place covered with snow by the river: we had to dig a trench to light a fire and cook small bits of meat and drink beer’.

Matt confesses he misses being a child and design lets him recuperate some of those childhood sensations: ‘the colours, shapes, and names of things… anyway, I try not to take myself too seriously and to add a little humour into my work’.

 

Matt Brown I DressLab.com
Matt Brown I DressLab.com

 

Maybe he also misses being told stories because each and every tale that contextualizes his projects is able to take us to the world he has just made up. ‘I make a lot of effort to tell good stories, but the fact is I’m not an amazing writer so in order to make up for my faults as a writer, I add physical objects. I hope people have fun with my stories, a story behind an object carries a context and helps people to imagine how it might be used’.

Among all the projects carried out up until now, there is one he has a special soft spot for: a story about an underground movement that never existed called dogpiling, that consisted in a group of people getting together to jump on top of each other surrounded by candles. ‘I spent one of the best weekends of my life getting it all ready with my girlfriend in Genoa. We even made songs and a page on myspace for the groups that grew out of the story’.

 

Matt Brown I DressLab.com

 

-On a slight tangent, just to say that before he replied to this interview, I thought that movement really did exist when I read all its documentation. A strange movement, yes, but there’s always people from all walks of life…-

 

Matt Brown I DressLab.com

 

A project that’s going round in his mind is to create a small family of synths or radios. Each one would have its own peculiarities and personality. It seems like a good idea, we’ll have to keep on his trail to see if it corresponds to what each of us has just imagined reading about it.

 

Matt Brown I DressLab.com

 

+ info. Matt Brown

 

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