Marta Wiley Gottfried is of Mexican Jewish descent and is generally considered one of the greatest classical contemporary artists of our time. Marta’s unique as a figure painter, as an innovator of styles and techniques, as a master of various media, and as one of the most prolific artists of the 21st Century. As a multi-media artist, Marta has created thousands of paintings, hundreds of songs recently hitting top charts on the radio with “Beggar” and “Signal.” Author of Ring of Light & The Water Daughter, Marta stands at the top of her field.
The prestigious companies of Cap/Winn Devon and Larson-Juhl/Artissance currently publish her artwork. Some publications have been top sellers now for over 15 years, grossing millions in revenues for her publishers, galleries and licensees world wide.
Training and Early Work
Born in Mexico City, Marta’s Grandmother, Martha Gottfried, a famous landscape artist in Mexico City, taught Marta how to paint at the age of two. And, as Marta claims, “Painting became her first language.” Her Grandmother, considered a national treasure in Mexico, painted in the same circles as Diego Rivera, Frida Kahlo and Juan O’Gorman.
Marta’s genius was cultivated by her grandmother and pushed by Irene Debohus, one of Martha’s painting friends and Frida Kahlo’s lover. Moving from Mexico City to Miami at the age of 9 and then to Arizona, Marta’s mother Nena Wiley, an artist and a search and rescue pilot, kept young Marta in Magnet schools focusing on the arts, many hours of painting and drawing a day for 15 years. At the age of 18, Marta was accepted at the Otis Parsons School of Fine Arts in Los Angeles on full scholarship.
The Working Years
Between 1992 and 2005, Marta published her works with the Phoenix Art Press, Wynn Devon, Grand Image and New York Graphic Society, all prestigious publishing houses. As a result, her art has become well known. Marta traveled extensively during these years, painting and drawing what she saw. Her travels took her throughout Europe and Asia. She found the city’s bohemian street life fascinating, and her pictures of people in dance halls and cafés show how she assimilated the post-impressionism and the romantic painters. The themes of the French painters Edgar Degas and Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec, as well as the style of the latter, exerted the strongest influence. Her famous painting, “Living the Dream” (Published by Winn Devon), reflects the influence of both these painters and, at the same time, shows her evolution toward the Definitive Marta.
Painting in Travel
In the summer of 1994, during Marta’s stay in Europe, her work entered a new phase, marked by the influence of Indian and European art. She found in this style an in-depth understanding of the ideal form of the female nude, which Marta restructured and developed into soft linear imagery. This style brought her continuously back to “the love of the line.”
The Scottish landscapes of her 1997 travels brought about an important watercolor series, very dreamy and romantic in nature. This series followed the development of “the way of the eye.” Influenced tremendously by India and Nepal, both spiritually and artistically, Marta popularized the Asian style with the original “Lepa Zena” horse (Published by Wynn Devon and the top-selling poster in the world today). With many other works in this style, she has helped bring the Asian-American revolutionary movement to home decor in the USA. Feng Shui has heavily influenced her art in this series. Marta’s African series (published by Grand Image) also helped reinforce the African-American cultural movement. These works were offered nationwide through Bombay and Pier One Imports.
Marta immersed herself in the museums of Europe, Prague, Holland, France and Mexico. She studied the old masters’ techniques by working directly from the original paintings of Rembrandt, Van Dyke, Vermeer, Monet, and many others. The aesthetics of the Old Masters impressed her a great deal, and she continued the classic tradition in her work, meticulously combining the techniques of the Old Masters with her own contemporary sensibility to create unique works. She came to understand their sense of composition, color and portrayal of the human spirit.
Marta’s beautiful treatment of the human figure draws from the religious, mythological and secular visions of the past. By adding visual elements of a more modern style, the results have been uniquely aesthetic. And perhaps hope has been revived that the ideal of beauty sought by the Old Masters still exists in today’s world.
Marta’s work has been commissioned by collectors around the world, from public and private organizations to corporations and celebrities, and has been shown and collected by galleries throughout the U.S., Canada, Mexico, Japan and Europe. Marta’s paintings can be seen globally in top movies such as Mission Impossible, Along Came Polly, etc. Over 300 galleries worldwide have exhibited Marta’s work. One-woman shows are held yearly in Mexico, Canada, Japan and New York.
Marta is continually developing new series of work. You can review current original works available today by visiting Marta’s website, www.martawiley.com. Enjoy!
Represented exclusively by Linda Mariano
LM2 Licensing and Marketing
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