British artist Jason Martin effects oscillations between sculpture and painting, with the vigour of action painting but a controlled hand. Drawing from abstract expressionism and minimalism, Martin makes paintings about paint – its materiality, sculptural presence and transformative, alchemical nature. He is perhaps best known for his monochromatic paintings, where layers of oil or acrylic gel are dragged across hard surfaces such as aluminium, stainless steel or Plexiglas with a fine, comb-like piece of metal or board in one movement, often repeated many times. Elsewhere, Martin does away with paint altogether in his wall-mounted casts of copper, bronze, and nickel, whose surfaces are unctuous but frozen. In pure pigment works, vivid colour is applied to moulded panels, whose baroque contortions appear like an extreme close-up of a painter’s palette. At STPI, Martin redirected his enduring spirit of experimentation to the medium of pulp and paper.
Solo exhibitions include Palazzo Cavalli Franchetti, Venice (2013); Le Consortium, Dijon, France (2012); Peggy Guggenheim Collect, Venice (2009); Es Baluard Museu d’Art Modern i Contemporani de Palma, Majorca (2008); Kunstverein Kreis Gŭtersloh, Germany (2007) and Centro de Arte Contemporáno de Málaga, Spain (2005). He was a prizewinner in John Moores 21. Liverpool Biennial of Contemporary Art, UK (1999) and of the Golfo della Spezia, European Biennial of the Visual Arts, La Spezia, Italy (2000).