Matthew Collins was born in Oak Park, Illinois, in 1970. Nurtured in an artistic family, his enthusiasm for art was encouraged from the earliest age. By his early teens, his study of drawing had already begun under the tutelage of his father, James Edward Collins, an award-winning architect.
Collins was accepted and studied briefly at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago where he focused on drawing, etching and sculpture. He finished numerous copies from the Art Institute’s collection, including inspirational works by Goya, Ingres, Corot, Manet, Whistler and Sargent. However being frustrated by the lack of serious figurative art training at the SAIC, Matthew left and completed a B A in the History of Art and Architecture at the University of Illinois at Chicago. In 1994 he traveled to Florence, Italy to finish his studies with the American painter Charles H. Cecil.
For over 15 years, Matthew has been living in Italy studying and researching the classical techniques painting and sculpture.
An artist of unusually wide breadth, his oil paintings, frescos and sculptures reveal a rigorous study of the masterworks of the past and a deep observation of nature. Not limited to a single genre his oeuvre includes portraiture, landscape, decoration and figurative subjects.
Matthew divides his time between Italy and Chicago. He exhibits internationally and his works represented in public and private collections throughout the United States and Europe. He is also a contributing writer for the Epoch Times New York Edition for their Art Speaks feature.
MEAM: Museu Europeu d’Art Modern, Barcelona, Spain
Museum of Sacred art of the Basilica of the Virgin Mary, Orlando Florida, USA
Dr. Fred Hohler, president and founder of the Public Catalogue Foundation, UK
James Keenan, president of the Bookplate Society of America
Finalist in the Figurative Category at the Art Renewal Center’s Annual Salon
Honorable Mention at the Oak Park Art League’s Member’s Only Competition
Finalist in Sculpture at the Art Renewal Center’s Annual Salon
Award of Exceptional Merit in the Portrait Society of America’s International Competition
2nd place at the Oak Park Art League’s 2nd National Carriage House Exhibition
2nd place at the 4th National Juried Catholic Art Competition and Exhibition, St. Vincent’s College
Honorable Mention in the Self Portrait category for the Portrait Society of America’s Member’s Only Competition
Finalist in Sculpture in the Art Renewal Center’s Annual Salon
Finalist in the Mythological category in the American Society of Traditional Artist’s Annual show
Merit award for Non-commissioned Portrait in the Portrait Society of America’s Member’s Only Competition
Bedi-Makky prize, National Sculpture Society’s 78th Annual Awards Exhibition
First place for sculpture Utrecht Art 2nd Annual Art Competition
First place for sculpture in the Portrait Society of America’s Members’ showcase
Honorable Mention in the Portrait Society of America’s Members’ showcase
The Dancing Faun of Pompeii: Removed from Habitat, Out of Context, The Epoch Times/ Arts Speaks, May 20.
The Vatican Laocoon Group: Death and Rebirth, The Epoch Times/Arts, October 14
Contribution to the sculpture section, Memory Drawing, Darren Rousar, Velatura Press LLC,
Interview with art critic, Rodrigo Canete for his blog: Love Art Not People
Il Quotidiano della Basilicata, July 1, interview in Italian
American Artists’ Drawing magazine (summer), “Matthew James Collins: Sanguine and Charcoal Drawing,” by M. Stephan Doherty.
Diario Irsinese, Anno XIV Numerio 87 Settembre-Ottobre 2008
The Magnifacat, 19: 3 (summer)
American Artists’ Drawing magazine (fall), “Materials and Techniques of Renaissance Drawing,” by M. Stephen Doherty
Realism Now: Traditions & Departures, Vose Gallery (exh. cat