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“Pairing Similarities” by D.W. Martin at The Erie Art Museum

D.W. Martin’s surrealist sculptures offer a different, enchanting view of the world at Erie Art Museum’s Holstein Gallery.

One of the advantages of visual art is its ability to capture that which is difficult to express in words.

Such is the concept of objective chance, a key element of surrealism. Writer Andre Breton is credited with originating it. Salvador Dali was perhaps its first and most famous practitioner. And here in Erie, Edinboro University of Pennsylvania art professor D.W. Martin is its standard-bearer.

The primary tenet of objective chance is its celebration of unexpected relationships and surprising juxtapositions — the combining of disparate everyday objects to create a mystical new visual language. Think of Dali’s dripping clocks hanging from trees, or how Rene Magritte toyed with scale and superimposed elements such as fruits and fowl into otherwise usual spaces and scenes.

Martin views the world in a similarly magical way in his exhibit “Pairing Similarities,” on display through Oct. 21 at the Erie Art Museum’s Holstein Gallery.

Read more [via goerie.com]

Holstein Gallery
June 30, 2017 – October 21, 2017

In Pairing Similarities, sculptor D.W. Martin presents a series of works in cast bronze and aluminum that couple parts of the human anatomy with inanimate objects, especially chairs. The pairings, odd at first glance, invite a deeper investigation of our relationships with the objects that surround us.

In conjunction with the installation in the Holstein Gallery, large steel fabrications are on view in both the wildflower garden and in the inner courtyard of the museum. These colorful structures integrate the structural qualities of elements from the built environment, such as electrical pylons and telephone poles, into gestural and often anthropomorphic images. Martin is absorbed by the sculptor’s age-old fascination with the human figure, and the way it is echoed in the mundane, ostensibly non-figural objects that surround us. Martin’s curiosity takes something ordinary from our daily visual noise and creates something extraordinary that we have never seen before.

David W. Martin was born and raised in Oklahoma where he developed an interest in drawing and silkscreen printing. After working as a commercial artist, Martin decided to pursue a BFA in printmaking at the University of Oklahoma and, in the process, developed an absorbing interest in sculpture. In 1987 he was accepted into the MFA Sculpture Program at Virginia Commonwealth University.

While actively exhibiting and selling his work through the gallery system, he began his academic career at Ohio State University as a studio arts technician for the sculpture and glass programs. He later relocated to Edinboro University of Pennsylvania where he has been teaching sculpture and 3D foundation for the past 18 years.

D.W. Martin currently resides and maintains his studio in Edinboro, actively exhibiting large outdoor sculptures in Pennsylvania, Ohio, West Virginia, Virginia, New York, Michigan, Indiana, and Tennessee. Since 2005, he has been affiliated with Flatlanders Gallery in Blissfield, Michigan. For the past 12 years, D.W. has exhibited his sculptures annually through the Midwest Sculpture Initiative, an artist-led program that organizes and supports sculpture exhibitions throughout the Midwest.

Source: The Erie Art Museum – Pairing Similarities: D.W. Martin

Artist Website


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