Luis A. Martinez was an Ecuadorian writer, painter, politician, and agriculturist. He was born in Ambato on June 23, 1869 and died on November 26, 1909, at the age of 40. His novel A la costa (1904) is a masterpiece of Ecuadorian literature, and is one of the earliest works of realism in Ecuador. He was also a painter; some of his best paintings are housed outside of Ecuador: Two are in the United States Library of Congress, two in the Modern Art section of the Vatican Museum, and one is in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. He was an opponent of the government of Eloy Alfaro (President of Ecuador in 1895-1901, 1906-1911) and fought against the liberal guerillas of the 1890s.
In 1896 Martínez married Rosario Mera Iturralde, the daughter of the poet Juan León Mera (1832–1894), who wrote Cumanda (Ecuador’s first novel) and the Ecuadorian national anthem. They had two children, the novelist Blanca Martínez Mera de Tinajero, and the painter Luis Edmundo Martínez Mera (1903-1976).
- A la costa (1904)
- Disparates y caricaturas (1903)
- La Agricultura ecuatoriana (1903)
- “Catecismo de la agricultura” (1905)
- “Camino al Oriente” (1903)