Matt Clark | Sculpting Beauty From The Broken
Matt Clark’s shop sits quietly behind his house. Other than a few sculptures in progress and a door that is made completely out of an assortment of used metal parts, there is nothing assuming about it.
Inside the sun flickers in through overstory windows. The shop is adorned with photos, quotes, parts for projects, works-in-progress and reference diagrams. In the center of the room stands a tree-like apparatus with hoist arms stretching out that Matt uses to lift, move and turn projects so that he can create his metal sculptures.
Matt was born in Provo Utah, but moved to Southern Utah when he was one-year-old.
“I’ve traveled other places, but Southern Utah always feels like home still,” Matt said.
Matt has been creating metal sculpture art for the past 30 years.
“I haven’t always wanted to be an artist,” Matt recalls. “Growing up I wanted to be world’s champion cowboy, and I thought I was going to reach that goal.”
All of that ended during his senior year of high school. He was working underneath his pickup and the parking brake failed. It rolled down the driveway and drug him with it, breaking his neck.
Matt spent eight months in the hospital. He was told that he should prepare to live the rest of his life in an assisted living center, and if the care was really good, he would maybe have an extra three to five years left to live. 30 years later, Matt is still defying those doctor’s prognosis.
“I think the creation part of my art has saved my life,” Matt explains firmly. “Every piece I do has a broken piece in it. Whether that is a gear or a chain. Something that was once working and excelling at what it did, and then it broke. It was discarded. It symbolizes what happened to me. I was injured and then discarded by the experts.”
Matt’s strong sense of community ties him to Southern Utah. Because he feels it is important to give back to the community, he frequently takes on speaking engagements and appreciates the strong commitment that is felt here.
“That’s why I stay here because of the connection,” Matt said. “The community minded base that the people have here. I am sure a lot of people move here for that very same reason.”