"Deborah Martin is blessed with a technique that allows her to portray space and the things in it with a quavering, almost feverish luminosity as she trains her eye on all forms of the American outback.
Martin is probably best known for her paintings of the blasted communities that surround the Salton Sea. But she paints other parts of the California desert as well, and has also painted the rural American south, the nether parts of Cape Cod, and other places in this country where society dissolves and individuals find solitude whether or not they seek it.
What interests Martin – whose pictures are full of human presence but devoid of humans – is not the mundane or the abject, but how habitation seems only to amplify the emptiness of the land itself. In this respect she extends Edward Hopper’s lonely realms into the context of “new topographic” photography".
Peter Frank, Los Angeles
"While Martin has been compared to Truro’s Edward Hopper and Maine’s Andrew Wyeth, her brushwork has an open, flowing spontaneity; still, her subject has much in common with painters whose melding of landscape and structure offer a template for isolation and separation.
Martin’s paintings share Hopper’s sense of mystery: scenes tiptoe close enough to their off-balance subjects without intruding. In the desert paintings, Martin’s interest is what is lost when hardscrabble land attracts a developer’s eye; in her “Narrow Lands” series, a soft palette intimates the loss of the built environment, abandoned or gentrified into oblivion."
Susan Rand Brown, Provincetown
"Walt Whitman wrote in the preface to the 1855 edition of Leaves of Grass, “The proof of a poet is that his country absorbs him as affectionately as he has absorbed it.” This theme manifests throughout the work of Deborah Martin who conveys the essence inherent within marginalized communities that exist on the fringes of American society...In the same vein as Whitman, Martin’s strength lies in her objective point of view, which she uses to expose what Peter Frank describes as the “unselfconscious attitudes of strange places where people have made themselves comfortable.”.
Anise Stevens, Los Angeles