Born and raised in San Antonio, Texas, Chicana painter Marta Sanchez has been inspired by traditional Mexican folkloric art expressions and contemporary issues. Her works on paper are mostly linocuts and monotypes, which follow the social and cultural traditions of Mexican and Chicano/a Art. Her paintings are mainly on tin or industrial corrugated metal. The materials, scale, and issues connect to present day concerns.
Marta has been working on a series of paintings of the San Antonio train yards near her childhood home. Through these paintings, she explores the role of trains in the Mexican migration through the Southern Pacific. Carpas, traveling circus and vaudeville troupes that performed throughout Mexico, are the inspiration for another series that has captivated Marta’s creative energies. Wings Press published a book on the collaborative suite of Carpa related serigraphs titled Transcendental Train Yards. The collaborative suite was created with Chicana poet and folklorist, Norma E. Cantú.
Her work is in the collections of The Philadelphia Museum of Art, The State Museum of Pennsylvania, The McNay Art Museum, The Fine Art Museum of St. Petersburg, Florida, and The National Museum of Mexican Art in Chicago. Marta’s work is part of actor/director Cheech Marin’s extensive private collection of Chicano art. She participated in “Chicano Visions: American Painters on the Verge,” which traveled throughout the United States from 2001 to 2006, as well as Mr. Marin’s exhibition, “Chicanitas/size does not matter,” featuring small works from his collection. Marta’s public art commissions can be seen in the Philadelphia area at Simons Recreation Center, and The Children’s Hospital in Montgomery, Pennsylvania. The most recent sculptural works for the northern part of the City of Philadelphia is a series of 100 feet steel installations titled “Reclaiming Gurney Street. The piece was commissioned by the Hispanic Association of Contractors and Entrepreneursto reclaim an opioid encampment to a public rails and trails project for the community.
Marta earned an MFA in painting from the Tyler School of Art, Temple University, and a BFA in painting from the University of Texas at Austin. She taught at the Philadelphia Museum of Art for over seventeen years and now teaches at St. Joseph University. She is co-founder of the grassroots organization “Cascarones Por La Vida,” which assists families affected by HIV/AIDS. Her work is currently archived at the Benson Latin American Collection at the University of Texas at Austin.