'Re-enactment II', David G Martin

Painting showing a dramatic spotlit scene with several characters on the floor and others standing over them with knives guns and a blue flag

Oil on canvas, 80 x 100.3cm, 2006

Artist's statement

The inspiration for 'Re-enactment II' was a tiny photograph of a Weimar period agitprop performance. In the photo, the actors appear to imitate Delacroix’s Liberty at the Barricades. My painting is part of a chain of removal; it is a painting from a photographic reproduction in a reprinted book showing a theatrical re-enactment of a painting (depicting an idealised event.) The German actors probably never saw the painting itself. 'Re-enactment II' represents nostalgia for the romantic ‘Modernist Project’ and the activities that took place before ‘the implosion of history. ‘

The painting is from a series of works based on a favoured book: ‘The New Sobriety, Art & Politics in the Weimar Period, 1917-1933’ by John Willett.


David Martin was born in Lymington in 1965. He studied at Sheffield City Polytechnic 1985-88 and the Royal College of Art London 1994-96. His exhibitions include Nerve Jason Rhodes Gallery London 1996, Loaded Ikon Gallery Birmingham 1996, End of Fellowship (solo show) Clifford Fishwick Gallery Exeter 1999, The Poster Show The Cabinet Gallery London and Gavin Brown's Enterprise New York 2000 and Sometime Blonde Rockwell London 2004. He exhibited in John Moores 19 1995.