Within the simple constraints of a glass globe, the captivating images in "Travelers" conjure up entire sequences of imaginary worlds and events. Walter Martin and Paloma Muņoz collaboratively create mesmerizing miniature snowbound environments, then record them in chilly color photographs. At first glance the work is playful; on closer observation, it often reveals darker narratives: Lone wanderers survey the frigid landscape, people and creatures exhibit unnatural tendencies and ill-defined crimes are committed. Martin & Muņoz create the figures--either adapting ready-mades or shaping them out of clay--then paint and position them within the environments they also construct. The final compositions are then captured in photographs that are meticulously stitched and adjusted digitally for the final effect.
This new book, featuring an original short story by acclaimed author Jonathan Lethem, contains the very best of Martin & Muņoz's most notable work, along with their newest series of panoramic narratives, for which they are already receiving accolades from the press--including a recent feature in "The New York Times." Curator Dan Cameron has complimented the artists on their ability to juggle both visual and psychological charges: "At the same time that they produce riddle-like parables about modern existence, they do not shirk the artist's obligation to invent a new formulation of tactile and even sensual pleasure."
Walter Martin, born in Norfolk, Virginia in 1953 and Paloma Muņoz, born in Madrid in 1965, have been professional and personal partners since 1993. They live in Dingmans Ferry, Pennsylvania and maintain a studio in Williamsburg, Brooklyn. Their work is in the collections of many prominent institutions, including the Walker Art Center in Minneapolis and the Miami Art Museum. The artists are represented by P.P.O.W. Gallery in New York.