Kenneth Martin

British, 1905–1984

73 followers

Kenneth Martin

Bio

British, 1905–1984

Followers
73
Biography

Abstract painter and sculptor Kenneth Martin was a pioneer of Constructivist Art in the U.K. After working in Realist portraits and landscapes for almost two decades, Martin turned toward abstraction, painting purely non-representational works that explored spatial relationships between intersecting and overlapping geometric figures. He drew extensive influence from Kasimir Malevich and Alexander Calder, channeling the latter in his mobile sculptures—composed of simple structural elements—with which he explored laws of tension, gravity, balance, and torque. In his “Chance and Order” series (1971), Martin set up grids on paper and numbered the points of intersection. Corresponding numbers were drawn out of a hat in pairs, which he then translated into lines on the grid. The resulting paintings are both abstract works and yet highly concrete, transparent documents of his artistic process.

Related Categories
Career Highlights
Learn more about artist insights.
User
Solo show at a major institution
Serpentine Galleries
Group
Group show at a major institution
The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), and 3 more
Institution
Collected by a major institution
Tate, and 1 more
Fair
Included in a major biennial
Venice Biennale International Exhibition, and 1 more
Biography

Abstract painter and sculptor Kenneth Martin was a pioneer of Constructivist Art in the U.K. After working in Realist portraits and landscapes for almost two decades, Martin turned toward abstraction, painting purely non-representational works that explored spatial relationships between intersecting and overlapping geometric figures. He drew extensive influence from Kasimir Malevich and Alexander Calder, channeling the latter in his mobile sculptures—composed of simple structural elements—with which he explored laws of tension, gravity, balance, and torque. In his “Chance and Order” series (1971), Martin set up grids on paper and numbered the points of intersection. Corresponding numbers were drawn out of a hat in pairs, which he then translated into lines on the grid. The resulting paintings are both abstract works and yet highly concrete, transparent documents of his artistic process.

Career Highlights
Learn more about artist insights.
User
Solo show at a major institution
Serpentine Galleries
Group
Group show at a major institution
The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA), and 3 more
Institution
Collected by a major institution
Tate, and 1 more
Fair
Included in a major biennial
Venice Biennale International Exhibition, and 1 more
Get the Artsy iOS app
Discover, buy, and sell art by the world’s leading artists
To download, scan this code with your phone’s camera