Wichita painter Charlotte Martin possesses great power, earthiness, and a sharp wit that flows into her work. These qualities show in the line and color that combine to make a Martin painting memorable and engrossing.
Inspired by her love of nature and the actual yard and garden work she does at home, the paintings are filled with birds, the sun, plant life, bugs, and the occasional dying flower. While they are filled with beautiful color in butterscotch yellows, spring greens, and robin’s egg blues, one could not call them altogether charming. They are also filled with imperfect lines, drips of paint, and smoky billows of smeared graphite.
With this, Martin reminds us that there are no straight lines in nature, and to everything, there is a season. And this slight and quite valuable undertone of edginess brings wonder to the work. And because Martin is prolific, her painting has also spilled over in to ceramics that feature wonderful color and similar subject matter. As with her paintings, I find her pottery fascinating and have collected many pieces for myself.
Charlotte Martin is KMUW’s Fall Pledge Drive artist and the station is hosting a show of her paintings and ceramics this Final Friday from 6 to 8 p.m. at KMUW’s headquarters located at 121 N. Mead on the second floor.