Acclaimed Aspen Art Gallery Blooms With New Upper Kirby Studio

Houstonians who frequently travel to Aspen, Colorado will no doubt know Christopher Martin. The celebrated painter and gallerist enjoys a popular presence in Aspen and the Dallas Design District with his eponymous Christopher Martin Galleries.

Now the painter known for his organic and abstract paintings is bringing his vision to Houston with a new Christophe Martin Gallery, which will premiere to the public on Saturday, January 22 from 4-8 p.m. at 2625 Colquitt St. in Upper Kirby’s famed Gallery Row.

An opening exhibit titled “Expanding Horizons” will christen the 2,000 square foot Houston space. This exhibit will juxtapose a selection of Martin’s abstracts with a collection of western-themed photography by Dallas artist Steve Wrubel, according to an announcement. Wrubel uses advanced techniques to create kinetic snapshots of horses and bull riders that have been altered to place his subjects in exaggerated natural landscapes, particularly to draw attention to the American West and its rugged nature.

When “Horizons” ends in mid-February, the gallery will host a series of solo exhibitions that will rotate every six weeks. Featured artists include Amber Goldhammer, Melissa Herrington, Ian Kimmerly, Monica Perez and Isabelle Van Zeijl.

Mainstay Houston artists include Martin, Paul Bloch, Kinga Czerska, Ysabel LeMay, Jeff Muhs, David Middlebrook and Wrubel.

Martin, who established his first studio in Dallas in 1995, is best known for his pieces created through the practice of eglomized glass – or gold glass. The reverse painting process involves Martin painting directly onto the Lucite backplane. This means he has to work upside down, starting in the foreground first before layering upwards – the end result achieves a level of depth and luminosity unattainable with traditional canvas alone, his hints bio.

He has established galleries in Aspen (2010-present), Santa Fe (2015-2018), New York (2018-2019), and Vail (2021-present).

Following its current spaces, the Houston location will focus on works by mid-career artists – abstract painters, photographers and sculptors – with a minimum of 10 years of experience, dedicated studio practices and the ability to produce site-specific projects, depending on a release.

“In addition to being home to a large portion of our private collectors, Houston is a vibrant and scenic arts community — one that we’ve wanted to be a part of for some time now,” Martin said in a statement. “When this prime space in Upper Kirby District Gallery Row became available last year, we knew we had to jump on it immediately. And we look forward to bringing Houstonians the hard-hitting offerings from our carefully curated roster of artists.

Christopher Martin Houston Gallery; 2625 Colquitt Street; Hours are 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday. For information, visit www.christophermartingallery.com or call 800-757-6035.

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