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Martina Matencio

Interview, 10/2023

Hi Martina, thank you for finding some time to make our interview. How are you doing lately? could you tell us a bit about yourself?

I’m currently on holiday on a boat with 7 friends in Ibiza so I can’t say I’ve been doing badly lately, although the boat is not as idyllic as it sounds. It has its issues, or rather I have mine. Summer is one of my favourite times of the year, sun, the smell of sunscreen, tan, sea… I think about it and smile! It is also the first time in my life that I have ever been in love and that makes me feel that life has more meaning. So, in general I’m fine, happy and eager to create and do things, although as I wrote in my book: now that I’m in love I feel that with one life I won’t have enough.

We find an ode to life within your photography. Is that a statement you want to make through your work or something that it spontaneously evokes?

I guess it has both, without even trying to do so. I always think that people like my photos because they have feelings or rather because they are made with my own feelings and feelings are something we all have, everyone has their own things and everyone takes them the way they can and the way they want, but for me, my photography is feeling, it is an ode to life, to my life.

You have recently started to share some personal photographs. Are you exploring that aspect of Arts in your work now?

Yes, to be honest it’s the first time I have shot in such a personal way, but as I said before it’s the first time I have ever been in love with someone and therefore everything comes out organically, I am happy discovering this world that I have never explored before.

I’ve always been into photographing the female body and the truth is that (I won’t lie) the female body has me fascinated, it captivates me, I could look at it forever. I always find the male body more robust, harder, less transparent, but in spite of everything, love has made me explore every curve of Joan’s body (my partner), I have discovered that I don’t need anything else because together we are a single photograph, a single landscape, a magical place, an eternal photo.

Your photography poses special attention to colour, would you share anything about your workflow with us?

Actually, this is something that people often tell me, and they pay close attention to the colours of my photographs, but I don’t do anything special, I edit the photographs the way I like, I don’t give it too much thought. I know what colour to add, what filter to use…I know how much contrast to apply and how much brightness to take away, I have a feel for it and that’s how I apply it. I guess I trust my way of looking and my own vision.

You are mostly photographing women in your work: Are you concern about the way you show their bodies? Have you ever had any inner issue with your own work?

I don’t worry about it, I photograph what I feel, what I see, what I want at that moment, what I like. Sometimes I feel that I am photographing myself or rather how I would like to be, that’s where I put everything that is inside of me, because I am unintentionally projecting myself on that person, nobody knows, not even myself.

If we look back in history, women photographers were not very common. What about being a woman photographer today?

I guess it’s not easy but being a woman is difficult in general, I try not to think about it too much or get stuck in that thought. I have suffered unpleasant episodes as a woman and it upsets me, but I will not stop, I will continue to do what I do, which is photography. There will always be people who see women as inferior, but little by little things are changing.

What has been your most powerful work in your own view?

When I went to do the promotional photos with Netflix for the series The OA. It is one of the most important jobs I’ve had, I remember it with great affection, the director, the actors, the people on set… everything was wonderful, plus whenever I watched the series I always thought: this series has something in the photo that reminds me of me and voila.

Where do you get your inspiration from? is there any artist or photographer that particularly inspires you? which photographer would you like us to interview?

I think my inspiration comes from suffering, it’s harder for me to create when I feel happy, I always need that drama to flow in my creative work. It may sound odd but it’s true. In any case, I’m learning or looking into photographing with other moods, for example now that I feel happy and in love even though humans are never perfectly happy all the time, it’s impossible!

Photographer Frank Horvat inspires me but what really inspires me are movies, books and people.

I would like you to interview Pia Riverola 🙂

And finally, would you like to tell us about future projects or promote anything?

Yes, I want to tell you that I have received an offer to take part in an exhibition in Seoul and I am very excited and happy because the theme of the Expo is “love”, and the pictures are going to be of Joan and me!

We’d love to bring you a miramono print version. It is not yet possible. Meanwhile...

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