Matches Series by Pei-San Ng

I want to take you guys through a really cool series I recently came across entitled Matches (pretty self-explanatory) by architectural designer and multimedia artist Pei-San Ng. She was born in Taiwan and raised in Los Angeles and has three different degress from three different universities, including a BA in Molecular, Cell, and Developmental Biology from UCLA.

Miss Ng’s most recent work uses the red tipped match as the module. “In Chinese culture red is a very lucky color, matches evoke danger. I think that by mixing those two messages the audience is forced to take a second or third look. I want to tempt the viewer to destroy my artwork.”

Check out more from Pei-San Ng at her website and let me know what you think via twitter!

Heart of Gold

This burning man has a heart of gold. The wood canvas has a light wash of diluted black acrylic ink. The white match sticks form continuous lines that all terminate at the gold heart. I created this piece by imagining if one were to burn it, what pattern would I want them to see…


This piece is composed of vintage matches that were given to me by my friend, Tanya. These matches are much shorter and their colors varied creating this dynamic piece. Crushes are small, cute, beautiful and there came many in our lives.


This hawk piece is partially burned from claws to head to body. I am intrigued and mesmerized by the in-between state and by the fragility of the burned matches. The in-between is where the excitement happens, the point where the red heads turns to white before turning to ash, it’s the tipping point. It’s also about the control of the burn. The utilization of the act of burning to create my variance in color.


This is the first match stick piece I made and it was made for the Chicago Art Department $200 exhibition. This was a collaboration between Nathan and I. I wanted to make art with balsa sticks, specifically a skeletal framed apple. This idea came from my architecture model making days in school. I love making models out of sticks. With limited resources, Nathan suggested using matches instead of balsa. Thus began my matches series. With every piece finished, came an urge to burn it. This piece before it was burned, it was called Temptation. Eventually, I lit it and now it’s called Burned.

Mookie's Sneakers

This pair of sneakers were made for my dear friend and roommate, Chris Hales, AKA DJ Tapedek, AKA Mookie. He passed away early Spring 2010. In Chinese culture, we burn paper money so the spirit can take these notes with them to the afterlife. These papers are called joss paper. In contemporary culture, they have included paper cell phone, paper credit cards and paper boats. I made a pair of sneakers for Chris to take with. He loves his sneakers and he always have the perfect pair to go with his outfit. He was fashionable.


This piece is made up of approximately 2,500 match sticks and a total of 24 hours. The board is a reclaimed art board / plywood. It was previously used as a glueing surface. The type is hand drawn. Love on fire represents romance and passion or destructions and jealousy. It is raw and gritty.

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