My artwork explores familiar landscapes and offers glimpses of how I perceive our fragile, ever changing environment. These observations are fleeting events; constantly effected by light, time of day, location, weather and also my personal sentiments. I use light and space to communicate emotional content and hint at the brevity of this moment. I’m interested in holding these moments closely and savoring them, for me, this is where the poetic intent of my work resides.
Living and working close to nature has given me a heightened sensitivity of environmental issues challenging the health and well being of our planet. My artistic practice explores my connection to the earth, the rejuvenation I experience in nature and my feelings of a responsibility to protect the environment.
During my daily walks along the shore, or on local woodland trails, I find space to recenter myself and rekindle my connection to a greater universe. This sense of awe within nature carries over into my drawings and paintings. As a landscape painter, I spend a lot of time observing and drawing the world around me. Nature, with its vast and expansive beauty speaks to me. Observing and sketching on location helps me visually absorb and comprehend a place. This research allows me to investigate the unique qualities of a natural setting and gain an awareness of the complexity of its interconnected natural systems. The effects climate change has presented challenges to our planet and opened a discourse regarding human desires vs. environmental protection. I’m curious about how people interact with natural environments and interested in exploring ways in which we can exist in harmony. It is my desire to inspire others to experience the beauty of nature and recognize our collective responsibility to protect it.
Martha Ferguson, painter, printmaker and nature lover based in Portland, Maine.
The natural environment, oceans and woodlands are sources of inspiration for her drawings, prints, and sculptures. Ferguson has had solo exhibitions at Adler Gallery in Port Washington, and Berkeley College in New York City. Her work has been included in numerous group exhibitions, including New Jersey Arts Incubator, Rosenwald Wolf Gallery, Sande Webster Gallery, and Gallery Via San Gallo in Florence, Italy. She has received painting awards from the East End Arts Council and the Guild Hall Museum. Her work is in the collection of the Sloan Kettering Cancer Center and various private collections. Ferguson was awarded a Japanese Fulbright Memorial Fund Fellowship to travel to Tokyo and was selected to represent American art educators in Okinawa. While in Japan she was the guest of renowned Japanese printmaker, Takuji Kubo and initiated an international printmaking project, “Peace Flags Across the Seas”. In 2012 and 2014, the Lerman Charitable Trust awarded Ferguson an artist residency at Soaring Gardens Artists’ Retreat in Laceyville, PA. Recently, she was also selected for an artist residency at the Truro Center for the Arts in Massachusetts and chaNorth in Pine Plains, NY. In 2010 Ferguson received her Master of Fine Arts degree in Painting from the University of the Arts in Philadelphia where she was awarded a graduate merit scholarship. She has also studied painting at Santa Reparta International School of Art in Florence, Italy and printmaking in Corsica, France.