The Mary Martin Gallery not only has been selected by the American Arts Awards organization as “The Best Gallery in South Carolina” for the third consecutive year, but also is listed by the AAA as one of the top 25 art galleries in the United States, for the third straight year.
“We are truly thrilled that we have received such prestigious honors,” said gallery owner Mary Martin, while seated one afternoon in her elegant, tastefully appointed 3,000 foot space that she rents at 103 Broad St., at the corner of Broad and King streets on Gallery Row in downtown Charleston. Martin also praises her staff, business analyst Don Olson and consultant Elaine Hruska. “Definitely ,we credit our artists and patrons as the prime reasons for our winning these awards,” noted Martin, a Clemson, S.C. native, who, although strikingly attractive, exudes a calm unassuming air. A 1965 graduate of Clemson University, she was in one of the first classes that admitted women to attend the formerly all-male institution.
Thom Bierdz, president of the AAA, who announced the winners in the competition, said, “The Mary Martin Gallery possesses a great diversity of artwork that is of museum-like quality, which includes bronze and stone sculptures, original oil creations and acrylic paintings, along with extraordinary examples of watercolors, pastels and other media.”
In an article in “The Highlights of Hollywood News,” Bierdz, an artist, author and actor, who has appeared in television series such as “The Young and Restless,” wrote, “The Mary Martin gallery has an impeccable reputation among both collectors and artists.”
Martin also curates and supervises the curation of art exhibits in hotels in the area such as The Venue on Vendue Range and The Andell on Kiawah Island, also employs Chase Barrett as the curator for hotels and restaurants that exhibit artwork from the Mary Martin Gallery.
According to Bierdz, the galleries that are selected as some of the best in the nation have not only great artists and an excellent staff, but also provide a superior art experience for anyone who visits the gallery, whether in person or online.
“A bonus for us is that we are given an opportunity by AAA to view art from people from all over the world who are emerging onto the world’s stage,” noted Martin.
For the month of April, the gallery will exhibit the artwork of three diverse artists: Goli Mahallati, a native of Persia, who merges realism with abstraction by painting people and animals with no faces, showing her ability to bridge gaps in post-modern art; Randall LaGro who is famous for his fascinating monotypes, and Nelson Grice, an Alabama artist who turns out unique animal sculptures.
Dottie Ashley at dottieashley@.