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David Martsolf

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Manhattan, Kansas

Birth year

Lives in
Windham, NH

Works in
Manchester, NH


figurative, surrealism, mixed-media


Dave Martsolf

A Great Review at

Recent Shows 2008 – 2012

Galatea Fine Art - Boston, MA 2012
Artmarket Gallery & Exhibitions – Juried Show – Boston, MA, June 2009
Experimental Art Gallery – Juried Show – Salem, MA, June 2009
Trees Atlanta - Trees in Art Exhibit - Atlanta, GA, May 2009
Group Show - Gale Library Annual Art Exhibition - Newton, NH, April 2009 on-line juried exhibition, March 2009 on-line juried exhibition, December 2008

National Juried Shows

Ellsworth Gallery, Simsbury, CT, 1977, 1978
Greater Fall River Art Association, Fall River, MA, 1978
Washington & Jefferson College, Washington, PA, 1978, 1980
North Platte Valley Artist's Guild, Scottsbluff, NE, 1979
Butler Institute of American Art, Youngstown, OH, 1982
Springfield Art League, Springfield, MA, 1983, 1984

Solo Shows

Gallery 33, Concord, NH, 1977
First and Second Unitarian Universalist Church, Boston, MA, 1979
Ainsworth Gallery, Boston, MA, 1979
New Hampshire College, Manchester, NH, 1981, 1984
Galatea Fine Art, Boston, MA 2012


Honorable Mention, Washington & Jefferson College,
Washington, PA, 1978
Juror's Prize, "UNH Revisited" Alumni Show, Durham, NH, 1981
Best of Show, New Hampshire Arthritis Foundation Annual Art
Exhibit, Concord, NH, 1981, 1982
Sawyer Memorial Award for Painting, 38th Annual New
Hampshire Art Association Exhibition, Currier Gallery of
Art, Manchester, NH, 1985


Massachusetts Institute of Technology 1967 - 1970 Architecture
University of New Hampshire 1970 - 1973 Fine Arts, Art History
University of New Hampshire 1983 - 1985 Bachelor of Arts in the Arts

Artist's Statement

I use a photorealistic collage style for some of my major surreal work. I also have a hand-drawing personal style that I love, and you will find some of that intermixed with the photo collages. On top of that I continue to enjoy explorations in many other directions, including computer graphics, pen and ink work, and watercolor. What you see here is the best of the end results.

The gestalt behind all of the work is an inquisitveness into the emotional and physical properties of as much of the universe as I can comprehend, moderated by personal choice regarding which of the infinite avenues I want to explore. As a result you won't find Hannibal Lector here, nor Joe Suicide. Those and others are certainly valid paths. I simply do not choose to take my life there.

My surreal visionary style is conceived in the bowels of endless empty space. Worlds come out of nowhere to define and fill empty space with form and reflected light. In these paintings I use photographs to develop a hallucinogenic, some say gut-wrenching realistic space where mind-bending visions rule.

Then there is my personal drawing style. In its simplest essence it is the line; the drawn line and what it represented as the delineation of a form, a space, almost the way a topographical line feels out the form of a hill, or the way a blind man feels out the tender forms of his or her lover.

That line is also the signature of the vibration of life and life's emotions, twisted by the influence of others, fighting for a day in the sun, learning the way of calm, the mastery of the surf of life and the swell of love and anger. Brownian motion, cosmic ray decay, elemental particles, the paths of chaos, entropy, and rejuvenation, it has all come down to the line.

Somewhere the two basic styles of real-world conceptual surrealism and personal drawing style meet. That meeting has generated a third style that look surrealistic, but is based on sketched forms rather than photos. I hope you find some enjoyment as you roam through my work. Thanks for stopping by.

Dave Martsolf Biography - The Artwork Speaks for Itself - Here is How I Got Where I Am

I was born in 1949 in Manhattan, Kansas. My dad, Louis, was teaching Art and Indian Lore at Kansas State University at the time. My mom, Ruth, was with him, working as a professional photographer. My dad left Kansas because his father, Arthur, called him, to help in the family architectural firm started by his uncle in western Pennsylvania. The firm's work encompassed private houses, churches, civic and business building projects throughout the four-state area. I remember the pastel and watercolor sets used in Dad's office to render designs for presentation to customers. I remember watching the draftsmen detailing the elevations, floor plans, and electrical and plumbing plans; the awful smell of ammonia used to make the magic blueprints in the damp basement of the old two-story office wedged in-between other small businesses in New Brighton.

Yet, despite the closeness of one of the few businesses in the world that requires a melding of arts and science, my parents never made a big deal about it or pushed me toward that life. Mom had given up her professional career to raise me and my soon to come two younger brothers. Dad had a small corner in the basement of our small New Brighton house where he stored his own paintings from his college days.

Dad is dead now. Mom is still alive. My parents were divorced when I was 12, and Mom and the three kids moved to New Hampshire. Dad never did return to art as a way to put food on the table. I think now that he must have always regreted that.  Mom never went back to professional photography either.  Looking back, I can see all this now and for myself hope to finally bring untold generations of talented ancestral ability from both sides of the aisle to the wider collective culture of global man.

After my own college experience there was a try at art. But, at that time I had become intrigued by the artwork of Salvador Dali. I still believe that for all his over-the-top tomfoolery he will stand out as one of the world's great artists in centuries to come. I painted in his style and found quickly after hundreds of rejection letters that his style was not in vogue. It may never be.

Today, as I look back and begin to catalogue all of the drawings I made through the years I can see my own style continuing to evolve until today it has finally come into its own. Along with this under-wraps cocoon-like development, I have finally found a partner I can talk to on a similar plane; a person with whom I can share my hopes, dreams, and fears with no worry of emotional repercussions. This last realignment I believe has already made and will continue to make a vast difference in the possibilities this last time around. And, this IS the last time around, so we either get it right this time or we go to the movies. As Emma tells me, 'Next time find me earlier.'

Other web sites:

Recent Exhibits

David Martsolf participated in these exhibits:

Jan, 2012 Unbridled Imagination
Galatea Fine Art
Jan, 2012 Dave Martsolf - Unbridled Imagination
Galatea FIne Art Gallery
Exhibited at these venues
David Martsolf has Exhibited at these venues:

Galatea FIne Art Gallery Galatea Fine Art
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