Q&A with Ron Martin

In his work, Ron Martin asks, why do people/artists forgo personal health and wellbeing in favor of production? Can we accurately visualize this dynamic and change it? (more…)

Ron answers the Inside ACT common questionnaire, giving us a quick insight on what he’s up to. Below is an image of his 2015 work installed at the MIT Mars Lab last semester.


How does the question of form factor into your practice in presentation, context or methodology? 

I feel that as a society we are just beginning to feel the impact of sensing devices on our everyday lives. Thanks to the work of laboratories at MIT, technologies that allow us to visualize and index even the smallest particles in the air and objects around us are becoming available to the masses. My art takes this motion for granted and proposes that the values that drive the creation of new “seeing” technologies have already been in place for decades, if not centuries. For me, the visual is the space where I, as an artist, live and work. Through critical imagining, I want to see how art making will change when such tools are widespread.

In one sentence, what’s your current research inquiry?

I’m currently exploring air chemistry as a site of ideological, sociopolitical and economic contention.

What are you reading?

I am reading Poesia Completa de Jorge Luis Borges, published by VINTAGE ESPAÑOL. Borges’ non-fiction writings anticipated many idiosyncrasies of a world where knowledge was available at our finger tips, as in the “total library”. Like Walter Benjamin, he sensed the path that technology would take from a bird’s eye perspective. Many know him as a great story teller, film critic and historian. For me, his poetry is like the soul of his work.