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2020 art sale and exhibition

Art on the Llano Estacado
Artist 6 of 12

Martin Gates


Martin was born in Lebanon, Oregon in 1955.  It was here at his grandparents cabin near Sisters, Oregon that he made his first carving, an Indian head from a piece of juniper out of the woodpile.  With a claw hammer and a carpenter’s chisel a dream was born. His family moved south in the mid 60’s and finally settled in Gainesville, Florida.  After high school he tried college and then married his high school dream girl, Roxann.  He worked with his father in the antique importing business.  With this he had the opportunity to study fine European carved furniture and other decorative arts by restoring and carving missing pieces.  In 1976 he studied woodcarving with famed Appalachian carver Jack Hall at the John C. Campbell Folk School in Brasstown, North Carolina.  Never losing his dream of being an artist he kept at his carving part-time and in 1979 apprenticed for wildlife artist Dan Demendoza in Sanford, Florida.  It wasn’t until 1987 when Martin won his first major competition that he turned to art as a full time career.  Since then he has won numerous awards and exhibited in major shows and museums across the country.

            His carving of a life-size Bald Eagle pulling a Bass from the water titled, “Wind, Wings, and Water” was presented to the National Wildlife Federation by the Corporate Conservation Council to celebrate the eagle’s removal from the endangered species list.

            Martin’s work ranges from a life-size Madonna, for the Catholic Church, to tiny hummingbirds.  His carvings have a unique style of abstract shapes and forms and often capture motion with his use of line and mass. 

            Martin is a member of the National Sculpture Society, Society of Animal Artists and Artists for Conservation and lives in Micanopy, Florida with his wife Roxann and has two beautiful daughters Sarah and Rachel.