Oscillating between hopefulness and failure, Dani Marti’s work is hinged to a representational paradox. For on the one hand it presupposes belief in the act of portrayal, and on the other hand it tacitly admits portraiture’s inevitable failure to accurately capture. His relation to his subject is consistently fixed: an obsessive, laborious, and often desire-driven attempt to represent something of his subject that is beyond appearances. Something of a deep-rooted lust between him and his subject, something of an essence, something, in other words, beyond surface. But it is surface—quite literally—that we as viewers are left with in Marti’s work, nothing objectively closer to ‘the real’ other than what one chooses to see and read into it. Marti’s work is thus an explicit reminder that viewer subjectivity is the only place where the portrait can truly be generated. His gestures toward it are merely our starting points.
Marti has exhibited locally and internationally in a number of solo and group exhibitions including Black Sun, Fremantle Arts Centre for Perth International Art Festival (2016), Slow Show, Greenaway Art Gallery, Adelaide (2015), Video Stage, Art Stage Singapore, curated by Paul Greenaway (2015), Obey! curated by Paco Barragan, Centro Cultural Matucana 100, Chile (2015). Dani Marti’s has also received a number of commissions for video, painting, sculptural works, and has been involved in many collaborative projects with the corporate and architecture industries. Such works include Midden, with Cox Architects, Newcastle Court House, Australia (2014), Green Square Library and Plaza, with Wardle and Aspect, Sydney (2013) Sydney, Westfeild with Urban Art Projects and Wardle+Hassell (2009), and Time is the fire in which we burn, Hilton Hotel, with Woods Bagot, Melbourne (2008).
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