The human body is the primary subject of Monica Aissa Martinez’ small painting. She portrays our bodies as fantastic little factories, maybe tiny sex breweries, in a series of works about brides and grooms.
… Martinez says the experience of her recent marriage prompted her to explore the topic of who and what we are in a male/female union. Fascinated by the look of scientific detail in botanical and biological drawings, Martinez treats the figure to a revamping that includes ribbons and champagne glasses. The bodies take on the form of laboratory glasswork. The details in her work hold our attention long enough for us to realize the sly humor of lifting the lid off the marital sacrament to reveal the delightfully intricate plumbing that makes the whole process pump.
Linda A. McAllister
Senior Curator, Here and Now: Arizona Contemporary Artists, Part 1
ASU, Nelson Fine Arts Center, 1996
Linda McAllister wrote these words over 15 years ago about a series of small works based on brides and grooms. When people tell me my work has changed, I don’t agree completely. My work still focuses on relationship, if not male/female then masculine/feminine. I still use the body as container and I highlight the organs, I work with the idea of transparency, and all these years later still use the same batch of pigment and enjoy making and using egg tempera.
Below are a two more examples of the way I’ve represented relationship and the play of masculine and feminine, or male and female.
Right now I’ve put aside what I was working on to work a new painting for an invitational. The theme – Sex, a woman’s point of view. The show runs in September. I began working on this painting right after agreeing to take part – just so I wouldn’t over think things. I got a visual while reading the invite and went with it.
This painting is casein on canvas and today I paint until I tire and can’t control line work anymore. I have a few decisions to make. I’ll just leave it alone until I resolve some composition and then continue.
I photograph at various stages so I can produce a short video.
– I’ll tell you more about the exhibit in time. The group of artists is exciting.