Martin Whist

Born 1967, British Columbia. Canada
Lives and paints in Chattahochee Hills, GA

Martin Whist is a Canadian visual artist who now lives in Chattahoochee Hills, Georgia. Whist began his studies in Toronto at the Ontario College of Art and finalized his BFA at  Emily Carr College of Art in
Vancouver in 1992. During this time, he showed at Catriona Jeffries Gallery in Vancouver. He then
moved to Los Angeles where he earned his Master’s at Claremont Graduate University in 1994 .Upon graduating CGU, he began showing most notably at Acme Gallery in the early 2000’s. After a number of years active in the LA art scene, Martin chose to retract from the public eye in favor of privately developing his art. While doing this, he became interested in film and the creative opportunities it
presented. He worked his way in the film industry to become an acclaimed feature film Production Designer. Whist has recently begun showing his work again in 2021 at TEW Galleries in Atlanta, GA, his first show since leaving Acme.

Artist Statement

The process of making my work is equally as important as the resulting image. The “success” of the image seems inextricably tied to my state of awareness, or lack of, while I make the piece. Although the end result is, of course, material in nature, the source of the image is immaterial. The mark making is an active meditation rooted in the simple, quiet, scaleless, present moment. The bridge between spirit and form. The image ultimately becomes tethered to the unrelenting and paradoxical duality of creative impulse and stasis of form. My work lives in this paradox. Potential and permanence. Perceived time and the present moment.

 My work is a bi-product and reflection of an active meditation: a meditation on the unseen becoming seen played out in an activity of impulse and response. In them there is a back and forth between questions and responses, introspection and execution, articulation and suggestion. Transcribing an experience and exploration at the intersection of spirit and form, mind and body, idea and execution. I make every effort to remain subjectively uninvolved but clear in translation.  Endeavoring to not trap the image but find a resonance and balance somewhere between a question and an answer. The impulse, inspiration, and motivation to create, to make a mark, finds its resting point on the surface. The surface is simultaneously the receiver and transmitter of thought while the viewer is then left to interpret, judge, become affected or unaffected as she chooses. Not unlike our daily interactions. Each moment remains an opportunity for us to take notice, or not. Is a work of art not just another opportunity to take notice? I strive in my work to transcribe a crystalized moment of connection. I seek not to explain anything and the image’s relevance and paradox in the world will always remain a wonderful mystery to me.