Steeped in the Glorious South West
Marine House at Beer has had a close relationship with Martin Procter for over twenty years. In the solo shows and studio days we have held for him we have had the privilege to see his art evolve and his reputation grow.
Martin lives in the heart of Dartmoor. Much of his life including his earlier career in architecture has seen him exploring and understanding the interaction of man and nature in Devon and Cornwall going back millennia.
From enthusiastically scaling the daunting cliffs of West Penwith when younger, enjoying the vernacular architecture of the region’s towns and villages, to his continuing almost daily enthusiasm for long walks with friends across his beloved Dartmoor, all are captured in his paintings.
His ability to enhance his interpretation gained impetus from annual painting holidays with a group of inspirational artists including Michael Morgan RI and Moira Huntly RI. They critiqued and encouraged each other.
When one looks over the last twenty years, three distinct trends emerge in Martin’s work. Initially success grew from his highly recognisable studies of local villages and towns where his architectural prowess and sense of shape and pattern came to the fore.
He then enjoyed capturing the drama and romance of the old coastal tin mining area in Penwith. In these paintings he has, while remaining true to landscape, played with perspective and often observed with a bird’s eye view.
He then returned more dramatically to capturing Dartmoor with larger heavily textured works picking out ancient manmade patterns and landforms often as seen from above. These bold striking works play with abstract interpretation which intrigued Martin, but over time he increasingly blended abstract with representational.
Now in his latest works he has pulled back from abstraction and found new excitement in emotive more realist interpretations of all the locations he loves – towns, villages, coastlines and moors – all with the distinct Procter signature.
This fine show of 30 new works combines all the strands in Martin’s creativity. It’s a fun testament to the glorious South West, it’s history, drama, beauty and human imprint, depicting Martin’s love for all its elements.
Martin and three friends, one of who is 80 in July, decided last August to scale all 181 Tors (peaks on Dartmoor) before the eightieth birthday. The Tors are listed in William Crossing’s ‘Dartmoor’, the definitive late Victorian guidebook. They are on schedule with only 43 more to be conquered by July 1st.
They are accompanied on every Tor by Martin’s faithful dog Mischa who will be 80 in dog’s age at the same time. Blissfully unaware of her mission, she is raising money for The Guide Dogs for the Blind.
If you would like to support Mischa in her challenge simply donate to: Visit the fundraising page