The intimate weave of art and life

Fremantle Arts Centre: Dani Marti, Black Sun

Internationally exhibited Spanish-Australian artist Dani Marti, trained in Catalan tapestry techniques, is a master of knots and maker of densely woven relief works. In this video, he talks about his solo show Black Sun, now at Fremantle Arts Centre for the 2016 Perth International Arts Festival.

Marti’s complex, large format entwinings of industrial, domestic and personal materials—including, for example, fibres, rubber, wire, rope, necklaces, and, in one glittering work, steel scourers—generates immersive viewing. His films are contrastingly documentary in style, but as rich in intimate detail.

Barcelona-born Marti divides his time between Sydney and Glasgow, working in video, installation and public art. His website declares that his “unorthodox woven and filmic works [address] notions of portraiture and sexuality in Modernism, Minimalism and geometric abstraction.” Marti’s frank and often sexually explicit films are labelled portraits, but so too his seemingly abstract works. Just how “abstract” are they? They are deeply personal for the artist, a form of self-portraiture. John Morgan Falconer writes,

“[Marti’s] The Pleasure Chest (2007) tangles necklaces and Rosary beads into a design with the all-over infinitude of a Jackson Pollock and the rich materiality of a Piero Manzoni. Meanwhile, as a filmmaker, Marti delivers catharsis by drawing us into his subjects’ lives of desire: Time is the fire in which we burn (2009), for example, telegraphs the confessions of John, a male prostitute.”

Look out for Laetitia Wilson’s review of Black Sun in our 24 February E-dition.

Dani Marti, Shield – Study for a Portrait – Take 1, 2015, stainless steel braided hose, polyester, nylon, rubber and leather on aluminium frame.

Dani Marti, Shield – Study for a Portrait – Take 1, 2015, stainless steel braided hose, polyester, nylon, rubber and leather on aluminium frame.

2016 Perth International Arts Festival, Dani Marti, Black Sun, Fremantle Arts Centre, 7 Feb-28 March

RealTime issue #131 Feb-March 2016 pg. web

10 February 2016
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