Philadelphia artist Matty Geez is known for his obsession with cacti. His portfolio includes life-sized sculptural cacti, variously-sized cacti in small ceramic containers, wearable pins, and ornaments. Whatever the scale, Geez’s succulents are visually fantastical with their bold colors, exaggerated materiality, and cartoonish aesthetic.
Geez states that his work is inspired by 80s B-rated sci-fi TV and movie sets—often characterized as pleasing the audience through spectacle and titillation—descriptors that are also likened to his art. It’s the contrast between the familiarity of the subject matter combined with saturated colors and use of materials that create such an eye-catching presence. The work is playfully accessible, while at the same time, Geez’s sculptures are as he says, “strange environments.” They are odd landscapes of natural and artificial elements that seem sourced from a make-believe world. Their flamboyance and caricature-like nature dazzles the senses.