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Martin Freeman uses common manmade materials that are the clay and shells of the twentieth century. Plastic, rubber, and metals salvaged from any number of sources (e.g. teapots, dolls, bicycles, washing machines, and toilet plungers) are recycled by Freeman to make creatures affectionately known as his "babies." As he is quick to comment: "These are the only babies I'll ever have."

 

 

The artist's sensitivity to form and materials enables him to work like a modern day Dr. Frankenstein. With an untethered vision, Freeman is capable of making the most remarkable beings out of an unlikely assortment of parts. Their anatomy is convincing, regardless of the seemingly mismatched pieces.

 

 

 

Freeman's philosophy of life, "there can never be too much fun," is evident in the form of his "babies" as well as their names: ten-inch dildoes with wigs become "Mom and Dad"; a Mexican vase with a silver necklace and flowered saucer skirt is known as "Conchita"; and a spindle-legged fellow sporting a tea pot head adorned with leg-like pipe cleaners for hair is called "Spyderman."

 

 

 

Fueled by his upbeat vision of life, Freeman injects his "babies" with a range of emotion that likens them to performers who both entertain and challenge the viewer. Varying in size from a few inches high to over six feet tall, the "babies" are surrogate friends who are constantly performing on the stage of life, often mimicking the artist himself. Drawing from an extensive background in theater and dance, Freeman allows his "babies" to strike whimsical poses that engage the viewer.

 

 

 

Essentially self-portraits, the "babies" confidently command the viewer's attention, and convey the artist's own sense of hope and determination to do more than merely survive in this world.

 

-J.F.

 

Click here for an essay by Jim Fisher

Turtle Monkey
27 x 16 x 17

Jelly Belly
14 x 10 x 10
Conchita
17 x 6 x 9
Toddy
18 x 7 x 5

All Tanked up and Ready to Fly
16 x 13 x 10

Mom and Dad
11 x 9 x 5
Spyder Man
23 x 11 x 7
 


Jim Fisher is the Executive Director of Visual Aid.
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Other Artists in "Scavengers and Seers"