Artist's Voice | Martyn Jones

Artist’s Voice | Martyn Jones

Martyn Jones is a contemporary painter who works from his studio based in Cardiff. Jones graduated M.A. Fine Art, at Chelsea School of Art, London and was awarded Junior Fellowship at Bath Academy of Art. Among his tutors were the British artists Patrick Heron and Peter Kinley. Martyn has been widely exhibited, including a solo show at the Robert Steele gallery in New York.

Martyn Jones

Colour has always played a fundamental role in my painting. The importance of colour was impressed on me at an early stage, by the British artist Patrick Heron. My paintings explore and are specific to, the theme of ‘place and time’. The work is descriptive in essence, natural shape and form taken from the world at large. Ideas for paintings begin with preliminary studies ‘in situ’, working directly from landscape or primary sources. Initial ideas are translated into larger scale paintings, working on paper or canvas. The compositional elements that are employed within each painting aim to capture a spirit of immediacy and simplicity.

The content of my work has been described as capturing a natural ambiguity, but that ambiguity should not be construed as being manufactured in any way. Within each image an open invitation is challengingly presented to the percipient. It is difficult to determine when a painting is finished, but usually I instinctively know when that moment has arrived. I can say more often than not, my paintings finish themselves. I don’t regard any of my work as having ‘breakthrough’ moment although when painting The Night Garden series I did discover I could create a monochromatic black by using a combination of ultramarine, prussian green, cobalt violet and crimson. This gave the physicality of the painting surface a depth and sense of immediacy that you are unable to achieve by simply just using black. People have often commented that the feathered or textured quality of the mannered brush marks of the Night Garden series is reminiscent of the reflection of light you may see on a raven or crow’s wing.

If you were to ask me which I would consider to be my seminal work or a single painting that led to a breakthrough in my career, I would find it difficult to choose a specific one. So I have included an image of a large painting, which is typical of my work entitled, Night Garden 2012, Oil on canvas, 200 x 200cms. I also like the image of this painting ‘in situ’ as you get an idea of the scale in the context of the gallery.

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New work for 2016 will be represented at Art Fair Cologne, Bebb Fine Art U.K. and Art Nou Mil Lenni, Barcelona. Solo shows have included Robert Steele Gallery New York, Artefact Pardo Gallery, U.S.A., Ffin-y-Parc Gallery and Kooywood Gallery, Wales. Work has also been exhibited at the National Museum and Gallery of Wales.