Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Martha Rea Baker Opening at Karan Ruhlen Gallery

"Excavated Passages" Hot and Cold wax paintings by Martha Rea Baker and Mary Long-Postal at Karan Ruhlen Gallery, opening reception, Friday, July 22.
Karan Ruhlen Gallery, 225 Canyon Road, Santa Fe NM 87501 -505.820.0807-

EAI member Martha Rea Baker was born in Texas and grew up in Mississippi. After college she returned to the Dallas area where she co-owned a gallery for two decades. In 2006, when she moved to Santa Fe, Baker embarked on encaustics. “It was a natural evolution,” she recalls of her 35 years working in watercolors, oils, and acrylic collage, all of which she manipulated by using layers and glazes. “The advantage of encaustic is the seductive glow of color I achieve through the layering process,” she says. Baker also works in cold-wax, mixing pliable wax medium with oil pigments. Inspired by the Southwest, Baker says that the content of her recent work is earth and land based. “I’m inspired by the strata of geology exposed in canyon walls and distant vistas such as those found in Galisteo Basin.” Ultimately, however, the underlying theme of her work is time. “Its passage and its effect on nature,” she says. “I seek a time-worn look—the results of erosion, weather, and the marks of previous civilizations.”

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