Off-Ramp | Off-Ramp host John Rabe and contributors share thoughts on arts, culture, and life in L.A.

Martin Mull's Off-Kilter Paintings on Off-Ramp

You know the dilittante artists ... people whose paintings sell only because they established themselves as celebrities in some other field first. (We won't name them here.)

This does not describe Martin Mull, who has a new show at the Samuel Freeman Gallery in Santa Monica.

Mull has two art degrees, both earned years before he started painting. He says he chose his brand of photo-realism (it's not exactly, as he explains in the Off-Ramp interview) because the viewer trusts a photo, and will start to go into it. Then, Mull says, "I hope they hear the door slam behind them."  

From the news release:

Martin Mull pulls the curtain on the frayed American dream in Split Infinitives ... Mull's nearly monochromatic palette creates oddly improbable, wistfully exquisite portraits of a time that never was. His muted tones evoke a handful of post-war promises – the malaise of industrialized plenty, the smiling suburban matron, the feigned largess of corporate polluters – to the refrain of the American work song.