Jason Martin

Oil paint is both medium and motive in Martin’s new work. Loaded onto boards in thick impasto and sculptural in its three-dimensionality, the painter’s most traditional medium – autocratically absent from Martin’s practice over the past three years – is transformed into performative volume, its material properties made dramatic in their own right.

Executed in subdued palettes of white, grey and black, with a monochromatic approach further implied in the works’ titles through reference to formal names of paint colour (including Burnt Sienna, Payne’s Grey, Ivory Black and Titanium White), these works continue a long dialogue with minimalism and seek to heighten the viewer’s sensitivity to subtle colour variation.

In Martin’s new series of silver cast works, paint is swapped for polished metal. In these works, mountainous sweeps of modeller’s paste are hand-sculpted, cast and then plated in silver. Like the oil paintings, they embody the dialectical oppositions that occur between sculpture and painting, both spontaneous and permanent, handmade and fabricated – their hybrid forms and mirror-like surfaces ultimately impenetrable and self-reflexive.

Published on the occasion of the exhibition at Lisson Gallery, London, 18 November 2016 – 7 January 2017.

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