Artist Statement

“Intrigued by the visual patterns and textures of stacked materials, I investigate the bundling, stacking, and clustering of materials into and around forms. This grouping of materials takes shape as furniture, as sculptural installation, and as interior architecture. Over several years I have developed the Komíny series, a body of work that investigates themes of place and identity through the act of stacking firewood. I, like many others, have a very specific and real history with the cutting, splitting, and stacking of firewood. Growing up, my family heated with wood and collecting it was a year-round family task. The ‘Komíny’ (Czech for “stacks”) that I create incorporate meaningful objects directly into firewood stacks. The embedded artifacts range from books to chairs to tractors, signifying different places, cultures, and histories, depending on the chosen objects and locations.

Komíny-NBS Explore was designed and first installed to commemorate the 30th anniversary of North Branch School, a small and brilliant alternative school nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains of Nelson County, Virginia. Each of the three objects in the stack represents one decade, as well as integral aspects of education at North Branch—community, learning, and play.”  Heath Matysek-Snyder, Mechanicsville, Virginia

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