The exhibition When Men and Mountains Meet by Paul Martin is a distillation of the artist’s lifelong exploration of the nature of nature, and the ways – aesthetic, symbolic, poetic, spiritual – in which we see and understand it. “To perceive nature in any way,” Paul says, “we name, measure, dissect or count it. When we are indifferent we abuse it. Signs, marks, symbols are how we convey what we have seen.” Impressive both in scale and detail, the new works in this show all utilise a range of organic materials, including beeswax, resins, powders, bitumen, magnesium oxide and ash alongside more traditional mediums, exemplifying Martin’s innovative painterly practice.
Paul Martin began his studies in the late 1960’s at Birmingham School of Art, a college dominated by Abstract Expressionism, before moving to the Royal Academy whose more traditional methods focused largely on life-drawing. Neither approach proved entirely congenial, but Paul describes those years as ones of ‘productive disagreement’. Paul Martin has exhibited widely both at home and abroad, and has work in the collections of The Royal Academy, The British Museum and the BBC. Over the course of his career he has garnered many awards including The British Institution prize for Printmaking and The Royal Academy Awards for Painting and Printmaking.