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Jet Martinez Artist Talk

Hosted by Heron Arts
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Join us for an intimate conversation with Jet Martinez to explore the techniques and concepts behind Un Lenguaje de Flores / A Language of Flowers. The talk will start around 6pm. Jet Martinez, a mixed media painter and muralist originally from Cuernavaca, Morelos, Mexico, now residing in Oakland, California. Martinez is a prolific muralist and studio painter who creates vibrant emblematic compositions with elements of nature, highlighted by an aesthetic deeply rooted in his Mexican heritage and his exposure to Mexican Folk Art. The artist transforms urban environments around the world with high contrast floral abstractions, often integrating birds and movement with a variety of colorful swirling vegetation which evokes the feeling that the area is alive and abundant. Un Lenguaje de Flores, translates to A Language of Flowers, referring to the artist’s inspiration from floriography; a method intended to communicate meaning with types of flowers and flower arrangements to convey feelings difficult to express with words. This new series of work comprises 20 paintings in a range of styles and gradations inherent in Jet Martinez’s paint applications. The artist aims to present a range of emotions using color theories that reveal a deeper level to the work. Martinez considers this series a reflection of sensitivities about the state of the planet, with his own personal hardships, victories and self-discoveries. A muted tonality, or a monochromatic palette, suggests a vulnerable side to the work. Martinez uses these flower motifs as a vehicle for communicating deeper meaning in reaction to abstract parts of his life. Born in Tuxpan, Veracruz, and growing up in Cuernavaca, Morelos, México, the artist was first captivated at an early age with access to seeing large works in person by artists like Diego Rivera, Jorge Gonzalez Camarena, David A. Siqueiros, and José Clemente Orozco. Witnessing these large scale public works inspired the notion that this could be the pinnacle of artistic expression for him. He was also influenced by the studio works of Frida Khalo and Remedios Varo. Martinez sees value in the immensity of murals, and how public art can impact a community with visual storytelling, cultural representation, and as a forum for personal expression. The artist observed influential decorative traditions in many of the towns in Mexico he traveled to throughout his life. Specific styles and objects created by each community reflected the region with their different types of flora and fauna, color palettes, and quality of unique craftsmanship.

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