“I want to capture something extraordinary in the ordinary,” states contemporary realist painter, Lydia Martin, who creates technically detailed oil paintings of interiors, landscapes, cityscapes, figures, portraits, still-life, and Trompe l’oeil works that depict everyday subject matter. “I find beauty in common objects displayed in old wooden boxes, library shelves or Mason jars; towering ball park lights vertically cutting through gray skies; busy street scenes of pedestrians and cars moving through traffic light intersections; every day scenes of figures in basement, attic, kitchen or studio interiors full of light, rich shadows, color and texture.
“One summer, while working in Padua, Italy, I was able to study Giotto’s Arena Chapel frescoes. Across town, at St. Anthony’s basilica, I was delighted to discover another series of murals, the last works of Pietro Annigoni, completed only a few years before my arrival. The vast cultural space that separates the medieval master from the modern counterpart was everywhere evident. Giotto had set out to render a visual biblical narrative for the benefit of a devout though largely illiterate audience, while Annigoni addressed a public as skeptical as it is learned. Yet there were certain things about color, light, and expression that remained constant. Perhaps more profoundly, it struck me that both painters were out to insist, almost militantly, that the art they were creating (like the institutions they were serving) be only as vital as it was flexible. There was something about locating continuity in constant change that I found terrifically moving.”
From coast to coast through out America, Lydia Martin’s works have been included in juried and invitational exhibitions receiving awards in oil painting and pastel. These include Harvard University’s Arnold Arboretum Arts Center, Boston’s Chase Gallery and Lyman-Eyer Gallery, the Whistler House Museum, the Milton Art Museum, the Cohasset South Shore Art Center, Chatham Center for the Arts, Attleboro Museum, Providence’s Chabot Gallery, Bennington Center for the Arts, Arnot Art Museum, SoHo’s Broome Street Gallery, Art Gallery at Stony Brook University, the Catherine Lorillard Wolfe Arts Club, New York National Arts Club, the James A. Michener Art Museum, the Butler Institute of American Art, the St. Louis Artists’ Guild, San Francisco’s Powell Street Gallery, and the Pennsylvania Academy’s American Museum of Art. Internationally, the artist’s works are included within private and public collections in Italy: Rome, Venice, Padua and the Netherlands: Amsterdam.
Lydia Martin attended West Chester University, the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts and Massachusetts College of Art. Her preferred medium is oil, though is equally at home with watercolor, acrylic, and pastel. The surfaces on which she works are equally various: canvas, wood panel, and paper. The applied techniques Martin has studied are primarily classical, as perfected in the Italian and Northern Renaissance and imported experimentally into the modern age. Through North Light Books and Quarto Publications, her art works have been included in various art books on drawing and paintings techniques as well as calendars and datebooks through Cedco Publications. Also, several of her paintings have pictured on book covers: “Secrets in the Sand: The Young Women of Juarez” book of poetry by Marjorie Agosin and “Renaissance Reflections: Selected Essays 1976-2012” by Arthur F. Kinney.
For over 28 years, Lydia Martin has taught at the New England School of Art and Design, Suffolk University, Boston, MA. She is a Professor of Studio Art and has taught / teaches classes within the Foundation Program: Foundation Drawing 1&2, Figure & Portrait Drawing, Intro to Painting for Non-Art Majors, Foundation Painting, Contemporary Realism Painting, 2D Design/Color, Print making, Paper making, Trompe l'oeil and Mural Painting techniques, Perspective Drawing, Painting and Collage, 20th Century Art Movements, Architectural Rendering as well as Interior Design Communications 1 &2. For 2010-2011, she received the Outstanding NESAD Faculty of the Year Leadership Award given by Suffolk University’s Student Government Association. In summer of 2013, Lydia Martin was granted the prestigious Marion and Jasper Whiting Foundation Faculty Fellowship to study in Paris, France. For 2014, she was included in the Art Career Project’s list of: “15 Notable Art Professors in Boston.” In summer 2015, Lydia was granted a Summer Stipend from the College of Arts & Sciences, Suffolk University, to support her solo show of her ongoing painting series, "Lotería " at the James Abbott McNeill Whistler House Museum of Art in Lowell, MA. Over 125 visitors attended her exhibition's opening reception, where the Artist lectured on the history of the Latin American Bingo-like card game of chance, Lotería, as well as discussed her creative process on oil painting techniques and concepts in contemporary realism. For 2016, Lydia Martin was invited to work with renowned painter, Odd Nerdrum at his Art Atelier/ Home/ Farm, Memorosa, at Rodvik gaard in Stavern, Norway.
contact Lydia Martin at: LydiaMartinpainter@gmail.com
Visit Lydia Martin's websites:
Artist's website: www.lydiamartinstudio.com
Useum Artist's website: http://useum.org/artist/Lydia-Martin
Fine Art America: http://fineartamerica.com/profiles/1-lydia-martin.html
Chabot Gallery Artist's website: www.chabotgallery.com/artists/lydia-martin
Pinterest Artist's website: www.pinterest.com/lydiamartin8/
Suffolk University Faculty website: www.suffolk.edu/college/12285.php
DeCordova Art Loan Program Artist Member's website: www.decordova.org/lydia-martin
Brooklyn Art Project Artist's website: www.brooklynartproject.com/profile/lydiamartin
AskArt Artist's web site: www.askart.com/askart/artist.aspx?artist=115620
Linkedin Artist's web site: www.linkedin.com/pub/lydia-martin/b/154/318