About

(Scroll down for the Curriculum Vitae)

STATEMENT

Life is told in stories. As an artist, I hope to translate and re-tell familiar stories while keeping a balance between discomfort and solace and humor. I am interested in the themes from American Vernacular art that arose during the Great Depression: suffering and joy, religion and disbelief, poverty and wealth, the burden of labor and the pride of accomplishment. I also explore human frailty and resilience, such as living with illness.

Ceramic artist Shino Kanzaki said that, “Everyone has their own task, and everyone has a responsibility to fulfill their task. My task is to create my own pieces. . .  pieces which cannot be made by anyone else”. I attempt to fulfill my responsibility as an artist by bringing just enough humor to the work that the viewer has a chance to breathe.

Each new work of art starts as an empty theater stage that is set with props, lighting, characters, and ultimately with a performance. I see the narrative aspect of my work being performed by the characters for the audience. Therefore, I try to use images of real people as often as possible for the sake of authenticity.

By using digital technology along with traditional methods, I’m able to achieve a synthesis that could never be had any other way. In the end, I hope to make well-crafted pictures that cause the viewer to reconsider their first look and find their own story in the work.

Biography

Gregory Martens was born in 1959 in Milwaukee WI, and grew up in the rural lake town of Muskego WI. His father was a salesman and avid Fundamentalist Bible enthusiast. His mother was a factory worker, gardener, craftswoman, and country music enthusiast. During his childhood he traveled back and forth from the country to the city to visit Grandma and his older uncles and discovered the incredible early Mad Magazines. Hot Rod magazine provided those great T-shirt ads for monster driven car4s by Ed “Big Daddy” Roth and Roach studios. As a young teen Martens was attracted to the art section at the library and the “Northern Line” of Bosch, Brueghel, Schongauer, and especially Durer. Later, during the early 1970’s Martens discovered Underground comix, Robert Crumb, Rick Griffin, Victor Moscoso, and Robert Williams. “I saw tremendous similarities among all those “Black-Line” artists and realized they were all influenced by medieval manuscript painters in Europe.”

Gregory met Sharon, the love of his life, in college; they dropped out, got married, and raised a family of three. After many years as a salesman on the road, Martens became a cobbler in Wauwatosa WI where his whole family helped fix the shoes in their busy little shop. After ten years as a cobbler, at age 46, Martens was suddenly stricken with a very aggressive case of Bone Marrow Cancer, and given two years to live. Many surgeries ensued, two bone marrow transplants, months in the hospital, financial ruin, bankruptcy, and foreclosure. Nevertheless, he recovered from the cancer and went into remission.

Physically unable able to fix shoes, Martens went back to finish college in the Art Department at UW-Milwaukee. The harder he worked as an art student the more he recovered. He finished his BFA and stayed on to finish grad school and received his MFA in 2012. Now he spends his time working in his studio workshop called Hip Joint Press, and teaches Printmaking at UW-Milwaukee. Gregory and Sharon have three adult children and one granddaughter, and live in Wauwatosa WI.

Curriculum Vitae

1633 Church ST, Wauwatosa WI, 53213 USA
www.gregorymartens.com
gmartens@mindspring.com gmartens@uwm.edu

EDUCATION
MFA Printmaking 2012, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee
BFA Printmaking, summa cum laude, 2009, University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

AWARDS
2012 First place award, International Snow Sculpture Competition, Harbin Engineering University, Harbin, China
2011 Frederick R. Layton Graduate Fellowship, UW-Milwaukee
2010 Frederick R. Layton Graduate Fellowship, UW-Milwaukee
2010 Chancellor’s Graduate Student Award, UW-Milwaukee
2009 Frederick R. Layton Graduate Fellowship, UW-Milwaukee
2009 Peck School of the Arts Scholarship, UW-Milwaukee
2008 Frederick R. Layton Scholarship, UW-Milwaukee
2008 Overseas Research Grant – Peru, Center for International Studies, UW-Milwaukee

TEACHING
2012-Present Associate Lecturer, Printmaking area, Art and Design, UW-Milwaukee, Milwaukee WI
2010-2012 Instructor of Record, Printmaking Area, Art and Design, UW-Milwaukee, Milwaukee WI
2010 Graduate Teaching Assistant, Lithography, with Prof. L. Hecht, UWM Print Studios, Milwaukee WI
2010 Graduate Project Assistant, Study Abroad in Peru: Past and Present, with Prof. K. Gunderman and Prof. C. Davis-Benavides, Department of Art and Design, UW-Milwaukee
2008-2010 Guest artist and critic for the Rufus King High School art classes of Mr. Dean Graf, Milwaukee WI
2004 Craftsmanship in Art, presentation to art classes, for instructors Mr. D. Graf and Mr. Stuart Howland, Samuel Morse Jr. High, Milwaukee WI

CURRICULUM
Introduction to Printmaking – Lithography, relief, Intaglio drypoint, book arts, monotype
Intermediate Printmaking – Photo polymer intaglio and relief, screen print, photo lithography, copper plate etching and aquatint
Digital Printmaking – ink jet and alcohol transfer, Photoshop techniques, zines
Photo Printmaking – advanced techniques, ImageOn film, solar plates, photo screen print
Advanced Printmaking – all aspects, individual study

RELATED PROFESSIONAL EXPERIENCE
2016 Printing Assistant for Mark Iwinski, Great Big Prints, UW-Manitowoc
2014 Guest Lecturer for Art Survey class UW-Milwaukee, Instructor Raoul Deal
2013 Steering Committee and Facilities Coordinator, and Vendors & Publishers Director for Print:MKE, Southern Graphics Council International conference in Milwaukee
2013 Curator for Kick Offs Print:MKE, 36 artist juried group show, Alterra on Prospect, Milwaukee WI
2013 Shop Talk with Gregory Martens, printmaking demonstration and talk for the Makers in Print Exhibition, Inova Gallery, Milwaukee WI
2013 Master Printer for Prof. Josie Osborne, UWM Print Studios, Milwaukee WI
2012 UWM Team Captain, International Snow Sculpture Competition, Harbin Engineering Univ. Harbin, China
2011 Screen Printing Demonstration, Present Music: Water Concert, Marcus Center for the Performing Arts, Milwaukee WI
2011 Collaborator and Master Printer for Xaviar Monsalvatje, UWM Print Studios, Milwaukee WI
2011 Commission for poster and limited edition print for the Art History Department, UW-Milwaukee
2011 Printing Assistant for visiting artist Dennis McNett, UWM Print Studios, Milwaukee WI
2011 Printing Assistant for Prof. N. Stern and Prof. J. Meuninck-Ganger, UWM Print Studios, Milwaukee WI
2011 Commission for limited edition poster for Grace Foundation, charity art auction, Milwaukee WI
2009-2010 Founder and first president of the Print Club, at UW-Milwaukee
2009 Intaglio demo for Milwaukee Art Museum Print Forum, UWM Print Studios, Milwaukee WI
2009 Intaglio demonstration for the Rufus King HS art students of Mr. Dean Graf, Department of Art and Design Print Studios, UW-Milwaukee
2009 Demo for freshmen art students, with Prof. J. Meuninck-Ganger, UWM Print Studios, Milwaukee WI
2009 Commission for set design murals, Grace Foundation benefit art auction, Milwaukee WI
2009 Commission for print and apparel graphics, Ceramic Art Students Assoc. of UW-Milwaukee
2008 Printing Assistant for visiting artist Peregrine Honig, UWM Print Studios, Milwaukee WI
2007-Present Owner, Hip Joint Press, fine art printmaking studio, Wauwatosa WI

SOLO EXHIBITIONS
2017 (October) Gregory Martens: Out From The Darkness, Grove Gallery, Milwaukee WI
2016 Gregory Martens: Seeing the World, Curator: Berel Lutsky, Founders Hall Art Gallery, University of Wisconsin-Manitowoc
2014 No Time Like The Present: The Art Of Gregory Martens, Mentors and Colleagues. Curated by the artist. UWM Art Center Gallery, UW-Milwaukee, Milwaukee WI
2011 Touring Myeloma, Curator: Melanie Hupfer, Independence First Gallery, Milwaukee WI
2011 Apocalypse Nightshift, Curator: Tom Strini, Third Coast Digest Gallery, Milwaukee WI

GROUP EXHIBITIONS
2017 Art & Music for WMSE, Pritzlaff Bldg. Milwaukee WI.
2017 Epic Doodle Project, Portrait Society Gallery, Milwaukee WI
2016 Members Portfolio Exchange, Southern Graphics Council Conference – Flux. Portland OR
2015 Sum Total: Art & Design Department Biennial Faculty Exhibition. Curator: Kyoung Ae Cho, Art Center Gallery, UW-Milwaukee
2015 24th Parkside National Small Print Exhibition. Juror: Michael Barnes, Fine Arts Gallery, UW-Parkside, Kenosha WI
2014 Shelfie, Curator: Debra Brehmer, Portrait Society Gallery, Milwaukee WI
2014 Fresh Impressions: Contemporary Wisconsin Printmakers. Curator: Erika Pettersen, Museum of Wisconsin Art, ST. John’s on the Lake, Milwaukee WI.
2014 Once años de peligro permanente, Collaboration with Xavier Monsalvatje. Museo Nacional de Ceramica y Artes, Valencia, Spain.
2013 Total Print Show: The Fine Art of Printmaking, Curator: Larry Basky, Gallery 110 North, Plymouth, WI
2013 Heroes Surround Us, Curator: Andrea Avery, JM Kohler Art Center, Sheboygan WI
2013 Another Place: Printmakers’ and Book Artists’ Perspectives on Travel and Place, Curator: Max Yela, Special Collections, Golda Meir Library, UW-Milwaukee, Milwaukee WI
2013 Top Drawer Prints, Curator: Cheryl Olson-Sklar, Peltz Gallery, Milwaukee WI
2013 Kick Offs –SGCI Print:MKE, Curator: Christopher Willey, Alterra on Prospect Gallery, Milwaukee WI
2013 Wisconsin Confidential, JM Kohler Art Center, Sheboygan WI
2013 Rejected!, Curator: Anna Helgeson, Dust Salon Gallery, Milwaukee WI
2012 Nicotine Bliss, Curator: Anthony Mikkelson, Jackpot Gallery, Milwaukee WI
2012 Approachable Art, Kindness A & P Studios, Milwaukee WI
2012 Benefit Exhibition 2012, International Print Center New York. NY
2012 How to Read a Book, Curator: Stephen Perkins, Lawton Gallery, UW-Green Bay, Green Bay WI
2012 ARTwork: an Exhibit for our Times, Curator: Michael Flanagan, Crossman Gallery, UW Whitewater, Whitewater, WI
2012 Annual Members Show, Walkers Point Center for the Arts, Milwaukee WI
2012 Day on Fire: Apocalypse in Contemporary Art, Curator: Charles Westfall, Slocumb Gallery, East Tennessee State Univ., Johnson City, TN
2012 Continuum 2012, Curator: Lee Ann Garrison, Union Art Gallery, UW-Milwaukee, Milwaukee WI
2012 Fidelity, Curator: Anthony Mikkelson,Used Car Studios Gallery, Milwaukee WI
2012 Making Marks, Center for Printmaking New Jersey, Branchburg NJ
2012 Published by the Artist – Benefit Exhibition, International Print Center New York, NY
2012 International Snow Sculpture Competition, Harbin Engineering University, Harbin, China
2012 The Moment Before Apocalypse, MFA Thesis Exhibition, Curator: Denis Sargent, INOVA Gallery, UW-Milwaukee, Milwaukee WI
2012 Unknown Endings, Curator: Nicole Geary,The Printmaker’s Gallery, Arkansas State University, Jonesboro, AK
2012 Unknown Endings, Southwest School of Art, San Antonio, TX
2012 Wood and Fire: Works From the Waterville Kiln, Curator: C. Davis-Benavides, Inova/Zelazo Gallery, UW-Milwaukee, Milwaukee WI
2012 Unknown Endings, Gallery 110, Univ. of South Dakota, Vermillion SD
2011 Illuminating the Issue, Special Collections, Curator: Max Yela, Golda Meir Library, UW-Milwaukee, Milwaukee WI
2011 Got Art? Curator: Robin Glazer, Speyer Hall Gallery, University Settlement, NY, NY
2011 A Book About Death, Curator: Almendra Sandoval, Quetzalcoatl Feathersnake Gallery, Seattle WA
2011 Guitars for Vets: Benefit Art Auction, Curator: Bev Belfor, Gallery 508, UW-Milwaukee, Milwaukee WI
2011 Annual Members Show, Walkers Point Center for the Arts, Milwaukee WI
2011 Milwaukee: A City Intersected, Curator: Andrea Avery, Union Art Gallery, UW-Milwaukee, Milwaukee WI
2011 The Gig Poster Explosion, Art History Gallery, UW-Milwaukee, Milwaukee WI
2011 New Prints 2011/Summer, Curator: Trenton Doyle Hancock, International Print Center New York
2011 A Book About Death: Memento, Curator: Patricia Sahertian, Willo North Gallery, Phoenix, AZ
2011 38th Annual Juried Art Show, Union Art Gallery, UW-Milwaukee
2011 Un-Speak-Able, Curator: Barbara Tetenbaum, Juried Book Arts Exhibition, Arts Center, Corvallis OR
2011 Visual Literacy, Art History Gallery, UW-Milwaukee, Milwaukee WI
2011 Touring Myeloma, MA Thesis Exhibition, Inova Gallery, UW-Milwaukee, Milwaukee WI
2011 Souvenirs: Memories in Print, Curator: Sharon Giesfeldt, Uihlein-Peters Gallery, Milwaukee WI
2011 Call of the Wild, Benefit Art Auction, JM Kohler Art Center, Sheboygan WI
2010 Annual Members Show, Walkers Point Center for the Arts, Milwaukee WI
2010 Arts Fever, Benefit exhibition for UPAF, Hilton City Center, Milwaukee WI
2010 37th Annual Juried Art Show, Union Art Gallery, UW-Milwaukee
2010 Eight Counties, Juried exhibition, JM Kohler Art Center, Sheboygan WI
2010 Parachute Project: Sweeping the Pool of Light, Curator: Makeal Flamini, Pabst Brewery complex, Milwaukee WI
2010 From One–Many: Contemporary Wisconsin Printmakers, Curator: Graeme Reid, Museum of Wisconsin Art, West Bend, WI
2010 22nd Parkside National Small Print Exhibition, UW-Parkside, Kenosha WI
2010 All Dolled Up, Grace Foundation, Benefit art auction, Milwaukee WI
2010 36th Annual Juried Art Show, Union Art Gallery, UW-Milwaukee, Milwaukee WI
2009 Bittersweet, Hide House Studio Gallery, Milwaukee WI
2009 Light and Paper, Design Within Reach, Milwaukee WI
2009 Print Club Juried Portfolio Exhibition, Kenilworth Square East Gallery, Milwaukee WI
2009 Lakefront Festival of Art – College Juried Exhibition, Milwaukee Art Museum, Milwaukee WI
2009 Annual Members Show, Walkers Point Center for the Arts, Milwaukee WI
2009 Lakefront Festival of Art – College Juried Exhibition, Milwaukee Art Museum, Milwaukee WI
2009 Crossing Over, Union Art Gallery, UW-Milwaukee, Milwaukee WI
2009 Way Beyond the Sea, Grace Foundation Benefit art auction, Mount Mary College, Wauwatosa WI
2009 35th Annual Juried Art Show, Union Art Gallery, UW-Milwaukee, Milwaukee WI
2008 Grand Viennese Ball Exhibition, INOVA Kenilworth Gallery, Milwaukee WI
2008 Of Making Many Books, Special Collections, Golda Meir Library, UW-Milwaukee, Milwaukee WI

PUBLICATIONS
2015 24th Parkside National Small Print, exhibition Catalog
2014 No Time Like The Present: The Art Of Gregory Martens, exhibition catalog
2012 Numbers Magazine, issue 73, exhibition review: Day on Fire, (p. 20)
2012 The Day on Fire: Apocalypse in Contemporary Art, Charles Westfall, exhibition catalog, ETSU, Johnson City TN (p. 9,42).
2012 Artist of the Month, Third Coast Digest, by Tom Strini. Urban Milwaukee
2012 A Book About Death, exhibition catalog, Almendra Sandoval, Quetzalcoatl, Seattle (p. 86)
2011 Cream City Review, Spring 2011, Literary Magazine, Milwaukee WI. ISSN 0884-3457 (p. 140-141)
2011 Gig Poster Explosion, exhibition catalog. Art History Gallery, UW-Milwaukee, Milwaukee WI
2011 Untitled: Visual Art and Film, Graduate Art Students Assoc. catalog, UW-Milwaukee, Blurb.com
2011 Visual Literacy, exhibition catalog. Art History Gallery, UW-Milwaukee, Milwaukee WI
2011 Call of the Wild, auction catalog, JM Kohler Art Center, Sheboygan WI
2010 Cultivate: Visual Art and Film, Graduate Art Students Assoc. UW-Milwaukee, View at Blurb.com
2010 Passing Between, Nathaniel Stern and Jessica Meuninck-Ganger, exhibition catalog, Gallery AOP, Johannesburg, South Africa. ISBN 978-0-620-45908-2 (p. 32)
2010 22nd Parkside National Small Print Exhibition, UW-Parkside, Kenosha WI, exhibition catalog (p. 36)
2009 All Dolled Up, Grace Foundation, Milwaukee WI, exhibition and auction catalog, (p. 22)
2009 The Mercy Review, literary magazine, St Paul, MN.
2009 From One–Many, Photo of lithograph used for media, Museum of Wisconsin Art, West Bend, WI
2008 35th Annual Juried Art Show, Photo of sculpture used for media, Union Art Gallery, UW-Milwaukee, Milwaukee WI

SELECTED COLLECTIONS
International Print Center New York, NY
Southern Graphics Council International
Printmaking Center of New Jersey, Branchburg NJ
Creative Center at University Settlement, NY, NY
Univ. of South Dakota, Vermillion SD
Milwaukee Art Museum: Print Collection, Milwaukee WI
JM Kohler Art Center, Sheboygan WI
UW-Milwaukee, Peck School of the Arts, Milwaukee WI
Golda Meir Library: Special Collections, UW-Milwaukee
Grace Foundation, Wauwatosa WI
Quadracci Family, Milwaukee WI
Drive By Press, Boca Raton, FL
Carlos Runcie Tanaka, Lima, Peru
La Casa Compesina, Cuzco, Peru
Posada Amazonas, Puerto Maldonado, Peru
Kunturhuasi Gallery, Miraflores, Lima, Peru
Harbin Engineering University, Harbin, China
North China Electric Power University, Beijing, China
Norbert Kox, Bimini, Bahamas
Sonja Van Rensburg, Calvinia, South Africa