The Skinny Showcase: Ben Martin

Gallery | 17 Mar 2015

Showcase: Ben Martin

"My design background has heavily influenced my art practice to date. I work within a variety of areas ranging from the home, human experience, cathartic work to the purely aesthetic. I have developed a reduced aesthetic and my outcomes are generally larger scale installation. I am currently investigating, playing and concentrating on simple forms whilst reacting to different raw materials. I try to achieve a reduced (I try not say minimal as it's become a bit of a dirty word) finish to the work. I look for clean lines, flat colours and I generally use materials in their raw state – I tend to source them factory processed or ready made.

"The current work, using industrial fixings and rope, I consider to be drawing within a three dimensional environment. Anchoring rope through fixed eyelets in different locations on surrounding walls, floors and ceilings creating a continuous traffic of lines pulled taut by a heavy, chunky steel weight on either end is so satisfying and creates a very simple and clean finish. I try to make the work immersive and I want people to react and enter the pieces. This is something that kids get instantly, they have no fear. Adults however are always a bit trepidatious about getting too close to the ropes.

"I try to work under a series of strict ideas to keep the piece from being too busy: Function – Line – Space – Object – Weight – Tension. As the work has progressed, Balance has definitely worked its way onto the list. These parameters have helped me make decisions that otherwise would be quite difficult to make, but by putting the rules in place if something doesn't directly attach itself to them, then it's removed from the idea. The work is fleeting and changes every time I install it. I enjoy this side of it because no piece is ever the same and every new space has its own permissions and challenges."

Graduated from Grays School of Art in 2014 with a BA Hons Fine Art Sculpture (First Class)
Selected for RSA New Contemporaries
Winner of SSW Fred Bushe Memorial Award
Currently Graduate in Residence at Grays