Mathias Schergen was born in 1954 and raised on the southwest side of Chicago, where he still resides and has since raised a family of his own.
Since his childhood, Mathias Schergen has been intuitively drawn to the visual complexities of the world around him. The aesthetic foundation of his work draws from the patterns, textures, shapes, colors, and special compositional relations found in domestic interiors and the urban landscape.
Mathias roams alleys, railroad prairies, industrial parks, and truck depots that permeate his neighborhood. From these places, he finds and collects indigenous materials that he uses to make the things he calls art. Discarded household items, drift wood, branches, exotic bits of hardware, broken signs, and debris from cars found along curbs are incorporated and repurposed into assemblages, shadowboxes, and fabric collages that attempt to re-imagine the visual conventions of established art forms through subversive imitation.
Mathias's work is a seamless hybrid that integrates the aesthetic and self-taught techniques of his childhood with his disciplined studio practice and self-aware identity, which he developed as a student at The School of the Art Institute of Chicago. Mathias attended SAIC in the 1970's and received a Bachelor of Fine Arts degree.
"My work is a compulsive attempt to reimagine the functionality of objects and materials to suit my visual aesthetic. It is a type of mimicry that fulfills a compulsive, life-long need to make stuff. I want to engage viewers in a conceptual dialogue that changes their initial assumptions about what they are seeing and what it actually is."