White Tide introduces Martha’s largest works to date, painted on a mix of canvas and board.
“Every time I paint in the same landscape, I become more familiar with its character: the configuration of colour, the amalgamation of shapes and forms, and the way the movement of the tide and light changes its identity. Over time my eye has begun to simplify the landscape, both in colour and form; over the past months this has led to paintings of a more abstract, minimal nature. These paintings have existed in my sketchbook as loose marks and ideas, but naturally it takes time to translate them onto canvas. The introduction of larger, flat areas of colour with simpler, paired back shapes still retains the same immersive energy felt in previous collections of the landscape along the Penwith coastline. I spent many days in early spring working from the beach hut on Porthgwidden, noting the movement and rhythm of the tide from early morning to evening, allowing new shapes and forms to develop on the canvas. The sweeping shape of the tide has become a pivotal mark in this body of work, paired with contrasting hues referencing the landscape surrounding Porthgwidden. The canvas and raw board have become integral elements in the overall dynamic of the paintings - small areas of unpainted surface, often where two colours meet, become a hue in their own right, giving a sense of space to the work. The addition of oil bar into this series has allowed a looser, more textural way of layering on the canvas, similar to the way I work in my sketchbook”.
Martha Holmes, 2022