Martin Sharp was a great family friend who had a big influence on me. As a child he was the first adult I knew who was an artist and he was always encouraging.
I drew this picture in 2008 because I wanted to illustrate Martin working in his home. Martin had an amazing drive and was always painting or drawing a picture. I loved that social visits would rarely stop him. He was a devoted artist and showed me that less talk and more action was the way to create art.
For those who are unaware, Martin’s home is a place called Wirian which is a grand old Bellevue Hill mansion , Original Kookaburra gas stove, thick timber doors and original bathrooms. The mansion is from a time when things were built to last. The main room Martin uses for his studio. Centre of the room is a massive dining table littered with papers, paint tubes, brushes, ash trays, Coffee cups and a model of a Ship. The bookshelves overflow with figurines, pictures of Tiny Tim, Charles and Di, Ginger Meggs, Mickey Mouse…
To me Wirian was a creative extension of the Yellow House, however Rene Magritte juxtaposition style which influenced Martin’s Yellow house work had grown into a love of of Tiny Tim’s old time music which isn’t everyones taste. But that never seemed to phase Martin, he was simply following his own passions.
I think what Martin found in Tiny Tim’s music was a great juxtaposition of songs melded together in a comical character of Tiny Tim. Tiny also sang the songs Martin’s parents enjoyed when they were all a happy loving family. Tiny Tim and Wirian both are echoes of the past singing in the present. I think it all makes sense if one follows their dreams which Martin did. His courage to follow his passions also helped create some of my favourite works of art.
R.I.P Martin Sharp 2013