Martin Rollins: Local Artist

Local artist, Martin Rollins is back on the scene again,  just in time for Christmas. Martin did undergraduate work at the University of Louisville and obtained an MFA at the University of Cincinnati in 1986.  He is currently on exhibit at the B.Deemer Gallery on Frankfort Avenue until December 14. In her notice for LEO magazine, martinrollins

critic Jo Ann Triplett remarks on Rollin’s handling of light…distinguishing from Thomas Kinkaide, the famed commercialy successful artist who died a few years ago.

Rollins’ show is reliably Rollins.  If you have followed his work over the years, you will instantly recognize that his current show  as skillfully executed, realistic expressions of local scenes and in this case, landscapes like his competently executed pictures of Louisville neighborhoods.  rollins1


What distinguished Rollin’s work back at the beginning was that he sometimes took an unconventional approach to composition.  His work was not the traditional ‘pretty picture’ view of a scene or landscape. Then, at the beginning, that was ‘artistic’ and even what, for him, passed as ‘edgy’.  Today, your purchase can safely be hung over the sofa and it won’t offend anyone and, years from now, it will look as fresh as the paintings he presents at some local gallery.

Rollins once tried out a different vein of subject matter.  Back in grad school, when others were using the freedom of an academic setting to expand their vision and experiment with different approaches,  Rollins felt compelled to ‘shake it up’ a little.  So he did a series of political leaders along with fruits and vegetables.

Apparently even recently,  sometimes Rollins will get ‘edgy’ and do a political figure and fruit.rollins3










But let Martin speak for himself…. we get this (speaking of Louisville younger artists)  “there are a number of artists, coming up, who don’t aspire to be, nor should they, uh, Martin Rollins”.  

Martin Rollins….discussing  Martin Rollins.