Since then I went to see one of his shows in 2010 in the now defunct Petley's Gallery in Cork Street and, this year, signed up for one of his classes at the Royal Drawing School. ( see a video interview with him here, then part 2 and 3)
Martin is approachable and generous with his advice and in a single week under his tutorship I learnt a lot. He is the sort of tutor who teaches by example, sketching small heads on a piece of paper to point out drawing inaccuracies and taking knife and brush to students paintings to simplify and demonstrate his free and loose brushstroke. He will be teaching again at the Royal Drawing School for a week from the 12th of January ( his class fills fast, book early !),
His website is a frequent destination for me when I am in need of inspiration and counteracting some of my painting bad habits.
One of my favourite bodies of work that he has produced is this series of paintings and drawings of Pole Dancers. He painted these from sketches made in Soho strip clubs, as a last row visitor who sees the scene through the filter of the old masters. There's the nude, the overtly sexy nude under cheesy coloured lights, and there's the indistinct mob watching, trying to touch and who knows what else they are up to. Lautrec and Degas come to mind for these paintings that talk about women, men, power, loneliness.
|Woman with Raised Arms, reworked 2006 to 2009|
oil on canvas
30 x 36 inches
24 x 20 inches
Martin will be holding a Studio Sale and an Open Studio day this weekend. I think that it would be a wonderful opportunity to meet him and get hold of one of his works.