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Don Martin and other Masters of California Post-War Art
May 4, 2019-July 6, 2019
Calabi Gallery, Santa Rosa, California

“Don Martin’s art is far too unique and varied to be categorized. His styles and choices of media were always personal. Sometimes irreverent and sometimes deeply spiritual, sometimes spontaneous and sometimes painstakingly crafted over long periods of time, he was the opposite of a one-trick pony.” 

–Dennis Calabi, gallery owner

Collecting on the Edge
September 15-December 15, 2018
Nora Eccles Harrison Museum of Art, Logan, Utah

“Crafted in lacquered layers and burnished down, the tiny shapes of Fire on the Mountain become cloaks to their underlying forms, their hems the contours of a topographic map. Mesmerizing elements animate the surface, shape-shifting so that the whole becomes a fluctuating depiction of imagination.”  

–Casey FitzSimons, poet, editor and art critic

Process as Paradigm
January 17-July 5, 2009
San José Museum of Art, San José, California

“Fascinated by the beauty of the world and dedicated to producing work that speaks of its mysteries, Martin transforms everyday items into elegant assemblages and asks us to look beyond the surface and consider the layered histories and meaning of the objects themselves. For Martin, art making was a meditative and spiritual experience.”  

–Lindsey M. Wylie, Curatorial Assistant

Selections, The San José Museum of Art Permanent Collection
San José Museum of Art, San José, California, Published 2004

 “His work occupies a unique place at the crossroads between Beat assemblage and the psychedelic visionary art that followed. Martin had little interest in the consumer culture of the postwar era and sought an alternative method of expression. His subjects, such as the mandala, the river, and the door, have otherworldly nuance and emphasize personal reflection, passage, and time.”  

–Lindsey M. Wylie, Curatorial Assistant

Don Martin: Chasing That Kite
April 25-August 2, 1998
The Museum of Art and History, Santa Cruz, California

“The work of Santa Cruz artist, Don Martin fills a variety of niches: eclectic, mystical, and experimental come first to mind. But for Martin, labels were unimportant. He created his artwork out of an unyielding passion to capture the beautiful.”  

–Julia Chiapella, Santa Cruz Sentinel, May 1998

“A concise exhibition from the life work of Don Martin, Chasing That Kite, shows the spirit he let fly in his pursuit of personal artistic experience. Drawing has aspects of a performing art, requiring the artist to adapt to circumstances and regard accident as opportunity. Using ink and watercolor, his angular gesture captures the dramatic poses of Buddhist imagery and the bold lines of Mayan ceramics. The patterns that ground or border his figures suggest repetitive ritual, stability, and delight in natural beauty.”  

–Casey FitzSimons, Art Week, July-August 1998

“Don’s work is an exploration of what it is to make art. He examined and played with a multitude of media; he combined found objects with paint, crayon with ink, poetry with form and color, car lacquer with lace; he made mirror images by blotting one on the other; he ran finished pieces under water to see what the ink would do, and then drew over the results; he torched paint on masonite; made rubbings of carvings, collages, or even garments; drew perfect portraits with a knife on cardboard. So much exploration, so much love, so much enjoyment of the process.”  

–Helaine Glick, Independent Curator, August 1998

Don Martin Memorial Exhibition 
March 15-April 4, 1992
Center Art Center, Healdsburg, California

“The Don Martin Memorial Exhibition honors a lifetime of creativity. Whatever the medium or technique, Martin’s aim was always to make something beautiful, what he called ‘something to come home to, something to thank.’”  

–The Healdsburg Tribune, March 20, 1992

Don Martin, Paintings and Drawings
September 5-September 30, 1974
Cooper House Gallery, Santa Cruz, California

“Filled with abstract youthfulness, the works were conceived in the hope they would be soothing, friendly and capable of commanding respect explains artist Don Martin. The visitor is greeted by a large Buddha-like figure. The aura of Eastern religions begins there and continues throughout the show in varying degrees and diverse forms, whose symbolism he incorporates, often with subtle touches, into his art.”  

–Kathy Aver, September 1974