Squirrel, 2008, Ink on 18th century print, 27,5 x 20,3 cm (10,8 x 8 inches)

Ruth Marten: Squirrel (2008)

Squirrel, 2008, Ink on 18th century print, 27,5 x 20,3 cm (10,8 x 8 inches)
Squirrel, 2008, Ink on 18th century print, 27,5 x 20,3 cm (10,8 x 8 inches)

Squirrel, 2008, Ink on 18th century print, 27,5 x 20,3 cm (10,8 x 8 inches)

Ruth Marten: Squirrel, 2008, Ink on 18th century print, 27,5 x 20,3 cm (10,8 x 8 inches)

Added to the Collection in 2013.

Included in the catalogue Ruth Marten: “The Unvarnished Truth”,2013 (Van der Grinten Gallery & Halsey Institute of Contemporary Art). Ruth Marten, “Fountains & Alligators” was reported in “The New Yorker” in 2016: “Eyeball Kicks”.

This piece was exhibited during the show “Erwarten Sie Wunder – Das Museum als Kuriositätenkabinett und Wunderkammer” 20.05.-15.10.2017 Museum Ulm as in the show “The Unvarnished Truth” at Van der Grinten Galery. The Ulm Show was curated by Dr. Stefanie Dathe.

About Ruth Marten

Born and living in New York City, Ruth Marten has worn several hats, in spite of the hair. From 1972 to 1980 she was an important figure in the tattoo underground and, as one of the few women practicing the craft, influenced people’s ideas about body decoration, championing what came to be called Neo-Tribalism. Working during the Disco and Punk eras, she also tattooed in the Musée d’Art Moderne de la Ville de Paris during the 10th Biennale de Paris.

Hired by Jean-Paul Goude for her first illustration for Esquire, she had a 30 year career illustrating for many magazines, music and book covers and is most associated with the “Year in Provence” books of Peter Mayle, designed for A. A. Knopf by Carol Devine Carson. There was a brief stint as a fashion illustrator for Bergdorf Goodman, Salvatore Ferragamo, Barney’s and Vogue Magazine. That love of the printed image informs her current work: changing through overdrawing and collage the configuration and content of 18th century copper plate engraving prints. Personal work, principally on paper, has been a constant while working in these other fields.

Sine 1989 Marten has expressed herself exclusively through drawings, paintings and sculptures. Exploring the phenomenon of hair for its sexual, cultural and purely textural content, she exhibited work based on this obsession at Littlejohn Contemporary (NY), Adam Baumgold (NY), in the “Pop Surrealism” show at the Aldrich Museum (CT), “Hair, Untangling a Social History” at the Tang Museum (NY) and at the Halsey Institute in 2009 with “Hair on Fire”. In 2003 she embarked upon her current interest in reworking the images and historical content of mostly 18th century prints from engravings, which have been exhibited at Isis Gallery (London 2008) and Van der Grinten Galerie (Köln 2013) and have been collected by the De Young Collection (SF), Charles Saatchi, Don Ed Hardy, and others. Marten also teaches Watercolor Technique at the School of Visual Arts.

Ruth Marten – Curriculum Vitae

born in New York / US
1967 High School of Art and Design, New York / US
1971 Graduate of the School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston / US
lives and works in New York / US

Solo Exhibitions (Selection)
2016 Fountains & Alligators, Van der Grinten Galerie, Cologne / DE
2013 The Unvarnished Truth, Van der Grinten Galerie, Cologne / DE
2012 Strange Bedfellows, Hosfelt Gallery, New York / US
2011 New Work, Hosfelt Gallery, New York / US
2009 Side-Saddle, Hosfelt Gallery, San Francisco / US
2008 Histore un-Naturelle, Isis Gallery, London / UK
2003 Red Planet, New Painting by Ruth Marten, Adam Baumgold Gallery,
New York / US
1999 The Hurricane Series, Littlejohn Contemporary, New York / US
1997 The Wavy Bang, Littlejohn Contemporary, New York / US
1988 Bockley Gallery, New York / US

Group Exhibitions (Selection)
2014 Reality Sandwich, Van der Grinten Galerie, Cologne / DE
Holding it Together – Collage, Montage, Assemblage, Hosfelt Gallery, San Francisco / US
2010/2011 Animal Instinct: Allegory, Allusion and Anthropomorphism, Kohler Arts Center, NY / US
2010 Surreal Reinventions, (with John Hundt), Palo Alto Art Center, Palo Alto / US
2009-2010 New Drawings, Arin Contemporary, Laguna Beach / US
2009 789 Gallery Beijing, Comme des Garcons graphics installation
/ CN
Hair Stories, Halsey Institute, Charleston / US
Museum Villa Rot, Burgrieden-Rot , Germany (travelled throughout Germany) / DE
2008 100 Stories, Hosfelt Gallery, New York / US
Fine Line, Adam Baumgold Gallery, New York / US
On Line, Adam Baumgold Gallery, New York, NY / US
2007 Drawn To The Edge, Adam Baumgold Gallery, New York / US
2006 Under The Skin, Asheville Art Museum, Asheville / USA
Twice Drawn, The Tang Museum at Skidmore College, Saratoga
Springs / USA
2005 Idols of Perversity, Bellwether, New York / USA
Contemporary Erotic Drawing, The Aldrich Museum of Contemporary
Art, CT / US
Words in Pictures, Adam Baumgold Gallery, New York / US
2004 Merry, Sideshow Gallery, Brooklyn / US
Innocence Found, DFN Gallery, New York / US
Mindscapes, Pavel Zoubok Gallery, New York / US
Headgames, Revolution, Ferndale / US
2003 Word Works, Adam Baumgold Gallery, New York / US
New Work, New Acquisitions, Adam Baumgold Gallery, New York / US
40 x 40, Adam Baumgold Gallery, New York / US
Double Visions, Adam Baumgold Gallery, New York / US
2002 Hair Stories, curated by Ruth Marten, Adam Baumgold Gallery, New York / US
2000 Summer Show, Littlejohn Contemporary, New York / US
Quirky, Adam Baumgold Gallery, New York / US
1999 Marks of Identity, American Museum of Natural History, New York / US
Sherry Leedy Contemporary Art, Kansas City / US
Shy, curated by Nan Goldin, Artists Space, New York / US

Press & Publication (Selection)
2013 Weird Fiction Review, 04/2013: The Subversive, Surreal and Irrepressibly Weird World of Ruth Marten, by Katie Lavers
2009 Hautnah – Das Haar in Kunst und Kultur, Museum Villa Rot
Trunk Volumen One: Hair, Boccalatte Pty. Ltd
Haare, Herlinde Koelbl, Hatje Cantz
2008 Carlo McCormack, Paper Magazine, April, 2008 New York
2007 Ruth Marten – Histoire-un-Naturelle, (w. essays by Dominque Nahas & Roger P. Thomas) Isis Editions, London
2004 Paul Klee and the Decorative Modern Art, Jenny Anger
2001 Tenderheaded, Juliette Harris and Pamela Johnson
1999 ohnson, Ken, “Ruth Marten at Littlejohn Contemporary.” The New York Times, Oct 22, 1999. Exhibition review
The New Yorker, Oct. 1999, Exhibition review

Leave a Comment