21 Over 31 | Deon Matzen

By Bonnie Gangelhoff

A trip to the local dump was all it took to get Deon Matzen inspired to create DIAMOND T TANKER II. The Washington artist recalls the day she brought some cardboard there for recycling and spotted the colorful truck. “Everything usually turns green and gets covered in moss here,” Matzen says. But this particular truck had just been power-washed, and the bright colors caught her eye. Matzen snapped a battery of photographs and eventually fashioned them into a whole series of paintings.

In general, she says, it’s color that inspires her. “Because I’m hearing impaired, I think color is a lot more important to me, that I’m more sensitive to it,” she explains. “I think when one sense is diminished, other senses take over.” Matzen has a bachelor’s degree in fine arts from Seattle Pacific University. She is represented by Gallery by the Bay, Stanwood, WA.

Featured in our annual “21 Over 31” issue in November 2009