Agnes Martin: With my Back to the World
Directed by Mary Lance | 2002 | 57mins
Agnes Martin is perhaps most recognised for her evocative paintings marked out in subtle pencil lines and pale colour washes. Although restrained, her style was underpinned by her deep conviction in the emotive and expressive power of art. Martin believed that spiritual inspiration and not intellect created great work. “Without awareness of beauty, innocence and happiness” Martin wrote “one cannot make works of art.”
‘With my Back to the World’ is a remarkable documentary on the internationally renowned painter, designated by ARTnews Magazine as one of the world’s top-ten living artists. This documentary was shot over a period of four years, from 1998 through 2002, Agnes Martin’s ninetieth year. Interviews with Martin are inter-cut with shots at work in her studio in Taos, New Mexico, with photographs and archival footage, and with images of her work from over five decades. It is a venue for Martin to speak about her work, her working methods, her life as an artist, and her views about the creative process. She also discusses her film, ‘Gabriel’ and reads from her poetry and lectures. In keeping with Martin’s chosen life of solitude, she alone appears in the documentary.
Published on 17 July 2015