Jaymee Martin
Try and Make: A Little Experiment


When I escaped Los Angeles for Charlottesville, Virginia, I decided to start a sort of ‘alternative arts space’ in my new town. This book chronicles the rise and fall of that space, Try and Make. (Basically it is about how you can’t depend on other people to make you feel legitimate, even when you are an artist who has to fit into some kind of art world or community in order to give a voice to your work. It never directly says that through.) I lost about two thousand dollars starting the space and I have been broke ever since. Yet I’m not sure I’d have ever fully realised the degree to which I hinge my own worth on the accomplishment and recognition of my artwork by other people, particularly the art establishment, if I didn’t plunge head-first into this project. I have no regrets.. With that being said, I hope you like it!

ABotM seal of approval

Self published
9×9 in, 38 pages, black and white, 2009
Edition of 40

Available from the artist

The fifth of six children, Jaymee Martin was born in Ambler, Penn., a small former-asbestos-milling suburb of Philadelphia. Just after her thirteenth birthday she moved with her dad to Monterey, Calif., a scenic and literary coastal hamlet, where she got serious about art and watching light change on buildings. After making her way to UCLA art school, she narrowly escaped getting sucked into the social machinery of the Los Angeles art world, finding herself in Charlottesville, Virginia alongside someone she almost lost along the way. Most recently she has decided not to attend the fictional-seeming critical theory powerhouse European Graduate School in Switzerland despite being accepted. Her interests include deciding not to go places, trying to hold everyone she’s ever met close to her, and Otis Redding.