Dutch-born Martien Mulder combines portraiture, architecture, landscape and still life photography. She lives in New York and among her clients are commercial brands, cultural institutions, magazines, and newspapers. Exhibitions have been staged in New York, Amsterdam and Tokyo and she has published two books.
Martien discovered her love for photography as a teenager. Her first pictures date from her high school years, when friends would pose willingly in her home-made studio. After her art history studies, with a major in contemporary photography, she decided to take her own pictures more seriously.
By composing handmade books of her photographs, she established a visual language that connected to the magazine and advertising world. She started traveling the globe, wherever assignments would take her, and created a body of personal work at the same time.
The variety of her subjects asks for a strong consistency in style and approach. Martien creates stories that are truly minimalist. The essence of each of her subjects is revealed without force, people seem to be at ease in front of her lens, and static objects are brought to life by her quietly focused attention.
Her pictures are personal yet universal, like visual poems that reflect a recognizable experience. With a focus on the natural and the real, Martien is always looking for the things that are delicately abstract. As a stylist once said of her work: “It has a rare and lovely lightheartedness. She is one of the few photographers out there who is doing work that does not undermine one’s self esteem, the way so many fashion or beauty images do. Her work is calmly reassuring.”