One cannot simply gaze upon a Martine Emdur painting. As viewers, we willingly dive into the picture plane with an immersive and ethereal sense of pleasure. Vast and emotive, her work triggers a feeling of nostalgia, subliminally linking us to this world, whilst suggesting another.
Emdur’s muse has long been the ocean. Her paintings are carefully rendered to capture and express the immersive quality of the ocean and its currents, whilst luminously portraying the light and ripples reflected from the sandy shallows onto the figures. The depths, with figures dancing and suspended in space, connect us not only to the natural world, but the nostalgia of childhood and the enticement of a time when you felt the cool elements against your skin. At times, a siren swims through the undercurrent of turquoise lace. In other works, we see a flash of colour—the bikini a lure to the eye.
There are many references from the history of art that Emdur’s work can be linked to. Certainly, there is a strong realist influence, albeit a subliminal one. The use of light and dynamism with her methodology are inherent traits to her practice. Of profound importance to the artist is her spiritual connection to the subject—not only the environment but the protagonists. There is a joy to her message—she is connecting with us, as the subjects of her paintings connect with the ocean.