Matt Smith was born in Kansas City, Missouri, and moved with his family when he was very young to Scottsdale, Arizona. During his grade-school years, the family lived for two years in Toulouse, France, and when he was in high school they spent a year in Geneva, Switzerland. His travels in these and various other countries, including Italy, Germany, Austria, and Spain, exposed him to the work of many of the great masters. This stimulated his interest in art and was a contributing factor in what was to become his lifelong commitment to painting.
In 1985, Smith graduated from Arizona State University with a BFA in painting. As part of his ongoing studies, he frequently visits museums around the country and has assembled an extensive library of art books. He spends four to six months a year traveling. This connection to actual subjects allows Smith to paint landscapes from direct observation during all seasons, reinforcing both his plein-air and studio work. He is considered one of the premier plein-air painters in the United States.
Smith’s prestigious recognition for his work includes the Robert M. Lougheed Memorial Award at the Prix de West Invitational Art Exhibition and Sale, the Colonel Richard H. “Red” Smith Artists’ Choice Award from the National Museum of Wildlife Art, and both Best of Show and Artistic Merit Awards at the Western Rendezvous of Art in Helena, Montana. In 2009 he received the Ben Stahl Artists’ Choice Award and a Merit Award for View Over Ediza at the Western Rendezvous of Art. He has had one-man shows in Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, Texas, and Wyoming, and has participated in numerous major shows. His work has been featured in American Artist, Art of the West, Art-Talk, International Artist, and Southwest Art.
Smith lives in and maintains his studio in Scottsdale, Arizona. He teaches several workshops every year.
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