The Virginia Museum of Fine Arts
(VMFA) presents Big Pink Paintings: Abstract Paintings 2008-11 by Martha Jones is on view July 16, 2011 through November 13, 2011. This exhibition of recent works by Martha Jones features oil paintings based on a consistent set of elements that call on the viewer to think about issues of color, scale, and abstraction within an artistic tradition.
These recurring elements derive primarily from the artistic conventions of ancient Greece and Rome, which, while known primarily for figurative art, employed a set of repeated abstract forms as a common parlance. Of these the arch and the meander patterns have consistently demonstrated the greatest capacity to transform themselves into other forms, including the imagery of waves, clouds, bubbles, heads, hearts, letters of the alphabet, potatoes, aluminum cans, toes, as well as others the artist may not have intended.
The predominance of red and pink imparts a comic tone as the artist reflects the influence of contemporary painting, particularly the late work of Philip Guston. The monumental scale of the largest paintings allows Jones freedom to experiment and offers viewers a larger-than-life experience
Jones explains: What interests me especially in my most recent work is the way in which a consistent set of elements will combine over and over to form different compositions. During the last three years I have been primarily interested in reconciling an overall circular composition with a rectilinear format.
Martha Jones is a recipient of a 2011 Virginia Museum of Fine Arts Fellowship Award. She lives and works in Williamsburg, Virginia.