Evelyn Martin is a retired visual arts teacher and artist.
She grew up in rural Red Deer, Alberta with seven siblings, nourished by a mother who taught her how to sew and a father who mentored her in gardening. She earned her BA and teaching degree at Trinity Christian College near Chicago and taught elementary and junior high art for 26 years.
During this time she and her husband raised their four children. She has given many art workshops to colleagues in the teaching profession; taught for 7 years as a Master Teacher for the King’s University and at present is a Faculty supervisor for Pre Service teachers at King’s.
While she was caring for her family and teaching she continued practicing her own art, primarily watercolour. She took classes at the University of Alberta’s Department of Extension from Harry Savage, Irene Klarr, Ihor Dymtryk and Alfred Schmidt. Sewing for her family kindled an interest in working with textiles as an artistic medium and after attending a course sponsored by Edmonton’s Needlecraft Guild in the early 1980’s featuring the textile artist Marion Spanjerdt she was hooked!
Her early textile work employs applique technique using solid colour fabrics. Over time this transitioned to applique and quilting of patterned textiles. Later work incorporates various fabrics, layers of tulle, fibres and yarns, beads and sequins and free motion quilting.
Evelyn is excited by the challenge of small or large commissions and desires to honour those who mandate her with work. She sees her place as artist in her community, where she can be of service in and to a variety of possibilities, which may mean producing a milestone artwork for a congregation or person; designing the cover for a service of lament, developing a logo for a business, book illustrations, a crest for an institution, or working collaboratively with people to create a cooperative artwork. She understands that art communicates, enriches, emotes, suggests new meanings, challenges and creates novel understandings of text and ideas.
The exhibition “Cosmic Threads” is a collaborative effort with her astronomer husband, Brian, in which his images of the night sky have inspired her tapestries. It is the first time that they are showing their work in tandem.
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