Art & Politics

first published in Juxtapoz, March 19, 2019

IMG_5493 (1).jpgMartin Machado, “Unalaska, Alaska (Dutch Harbor)”, 20 x 24 inches, oil on canvas, 2018.

Martin Machado’s Odyssey

By Tamsin Smith & Matt Gonzalez

Martin Machado’s solo show Hove To at Park Life Gallery chronicles scenes from his days at sea working on commercial fishing vessels and international containerships. In dialog with these oil paintings are others set in and around his home port, the waterways and shorelines of the San Francisco Bay. The visual terrain, as well as the show’s title, suggest a tidal pull of opposing energies, of pressure and counterpressure.

In this exhibit, Machado captures the march of material progress, as well as the commonality of human emotion across time, location, or personal history. A painting of crates in China’s Qingdao trading port suggests both the wealth of nations and the poverty of individual laborers.  A scene from Jebel Ali, the…

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