Circles and geometry are common symbols encountered in everyday life. We see circles as useful and perhaps in art, as representations of us. In Martin’s new series, “Balance” circles do stand in for us, our most perfect selves. In life and it the paintings these circles are sometimes surrounded or trapped within squares and compartments. The series is about gaining and achieving balance within oneself despite chaotic outside forces. There are gateways, ladders and “rough spots” in our life’s journey all designed to give us more information about our self.

Differing technique wise from my other collages, the Balance Series combines fewer technical tools than normally. There are prismacolor sticks used for detailing, metallic paint used as a wash, acrylic paint layering used for texturing. Modeling paste, gloss mediums and gels have been used to form a three dimensional relief in some paintings.The simplicity of the painting techniques employed highlights that the journey for Balance isn’t in “more” tools or “more” toys or “more” techniques. Balance is as much a process of simplifying (and stripping away) as it is learning life’s lessons. Balance #2 is dark, structured and yet hopefuland Balance #3 is bold, asymmetric and yet balanced.

The Balance Series is a visual reminder of the beauty and power within each of us. It has been by personal journey or the past three years to uncover this truth for myself. The answer for each of us lies in recognizing our strength and by focus upon and listening to it. De-clutter or simplifying outer demands and remembering in difficult times “this too shall pass”.

“Balance” for each of us is a vital life skill, these paintings are my visual reminders!

Kay Martin, N.A.P.A.
December 2007