ARTIST PROFILE

Raquel Martinez 2.jpg

Images from top:

1. Polaroid of Raquel Martinez in the print studio. Photograph: Maresa Harvey

2. Nuclear Family, 2021, Raquel Martinez

3. Enlight I, 2021, Raquel Martinez

4. (Right) photograph of artist signing Nuclear Family edition, July 2021. Photograph: Maresa Harvey


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GETTING TO KNOW

Raquel Martinez

PRINTMAKER

LONDON, ENGLAND

b. 1984

Practice 

Light has always had a power to mesmerise us and Raquel Martinez manages to capture its fluid and intangible nature in a tantalising and physical way. Martinez is a printmaker, enthralled with the process and journey of making. She employs a particular printing technique called photopolymer gravure that is integral to her practice. This method of printing involves exposing a plate with light to create an image, the plate is then inked and printed on to paper using pressure through an etching press. Whilst traditionally used in photography, Martinez uses the technique in a new and innovative way; working with this process to push it to and explore its’ limits. With a background in photography and filmmaking, it seems fitting that this chosen method has parallels to other photographic practices such as photograms.

'I am interested in the final result, but for me - it is more about the journey, the process, that makes me make prints.'

 

The prints created by Martinez are ethereal and captivating. Her use of colour is integral to the final work and something that the artist experiments with throughout the making process. Whilst it is usual to use up to two plates in the photopolymer gravure technique, Martinez works meticulously in her experimentation, pushing the process to the limits and often choosing to incorporate three differently exposed plates. She typically lands on the final work through multiple proofs, knowing instinctively when it has been created and she has captured the correct essence that she had been searching for. The proofing process takes time and patience. Experimenting not only with colour, but also with the orientation, order and pressure of the plates when printing. With her honed skill and experience in printmaking, her organic approach to the creative process pushes the artist to develop the finalised print intuitively.

 

Martinez is keen to explain that she is not a conceptual artist. Rather, it is the way of working and the process that leads her to her creative outputs. Where the final prints are all about the observer. Welcoming the audience to explore the space that has been constructed, creating an opportunity to interact with the works and allowing the colours themselves and the forms of the shapes to explain a feeling or emotion without direct description.

'I am not a spiritual person but in a way, the prints are now a part of my life and they come to me.
They happen in a moment and I cannot separate them from my personal life.' 

'Background

Raquel Martinez is a Catalan printmaker and visual artist based in London, UK. Since moving to the city in 2014, she has worked at Thumbprint Editions where she is now Studio Manager. In this role she has worked with numerous contemporary UK artists that have been influential to her own practice.

 

Martinez grew up in a creative family and has held a lifelong interest in art. However, it is during the last year (2020) that she has really had the opportunity to commit to her own creative work. At an early age she had an interest in science and experimentation. Although quickly deciding that art would be the best suited direction for her career, her passion for experimentation has remained. Working with existing images has always been a keen interest, starting from experimenting with using out-of-date film and creating collages.

 

Her early interest in printmaking stemmed from a short course during her Foundation Year Degree at Escola d’art de Vic, Barcelona. Martinez then studied Fine Art at University of Barcelona, where she specialised in video and photography. She then did further specialised study in printmaking at Escola d’Art Llotja, Barcelona. Martinez cites a number of early influences including Anish Kapoor and Carlos Cruz-Diez, although often emphasises that the opportunity to see practicing artists such as Cornelia Parker and master printmaker Peter Kosowicz at work have been truly fundamental to the development of her work.

 

Further Information

Instagram: @raquel_martisa

 

For further enquires please contact:

info@latentcollective.co.uk

 

Selected Prizes and Exhibitions
 

On Paper Contest, 2021, Barcelona

1st Prize – Nuclear Family

 

First Edition of Open Art 20x20 Mini Print International, 2021, Barcelona

La Maldita Estampa
Honorable Mention
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