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Late recognized as one of the greatest draftsman of Outsider art of the 20th century, Martín Ramírez's tragic destiny was marked by the trials of migration, labour exploitation, cultural displacement and forced isolation: his work is a powerful testimony to his experiences. In 1925, leaving his family behind, he entered the United States to work in the mines as well as in railroad tracks construction. A few years later, subject to mental disorders, he was hospitalized before being sentenced to involuntary confinement for the rest of his life.
Today, his work is the subject of numerous retrospective exhibitions and it became celebrated through a commemorative stamp collection by the United States Postal Service. Named Martín Ramírez Forever, this edition was the first ever dedicated to a foreign artist.
Both figurative and abstract, his obsessive production of hundreds of full-page drawings bears the nostalgic traces of his roots, the meanders and mazes of his pain- ful journey - transnational and introspective - and the vernacular elements of his native country, from La Madonna to Bandidos, Forest animals, Tunnels and trains.
It’s these recurring motifs with sinuous and angular repeated lines, defying the laws of perspective, that have imprinted the collection with a warm tone atmosphere of dream-like landscapes. Created from five of the artist's artworks in their original formats, the wardrobe reveals fragments of wondrous topography where creatures, hair-like patterns and moving figures emerge from a mad Garden of Eden.
The Martín Ramírez capsule collection was shot by French photographer Estelle Hanania at the Lemaire Studio and Rue de la Corderie in Paris. The pieces are worn by Lovisa, Rouguy and Sonia.
Shot in September 2020 at the Ricco/Maresca in New York this introduction video presents the work of outsider artist Martín Ramírez.
Ricco/Maresca champions and showcases the art of self-taught masters working outside the continuum of art history. The gallery specializes in Outsider, Self-Taught, Contemporary, and historically significant American Folk art in various media.
Lemaire thanks the Ricco/Maresca Gallery, Frank Maresca, Kylie Ryu and the family of Martín Ramírez for their collaboration on this special project.