12.5 x 16.5 monotype, mixed media, 2016
Martin Schumacher combines monotype printmaking with a variety of multimedia techniques. Often beginning with a monotype print, Martin will attempt to tease out certain images or resonant details suggested by the original print with charcoal, ink, or paints, while often also manipulating the image in digital form. Martin will also sometimes combine prints digitally to create something of a monotype collage or assemblage.
Schumacher says he’s drawn to monotypes for several reasons. The process calls for constant experimentation, quick decision-making, and a willing suspension of a careful, planned approach, all of which is in sharp contrast to his ‘real’ work life. The process of developing these “painterly prints” often allows for a sense of discovery, of surprise, and even play — the kinds of experience often forgotten in adulthood.
In terms of influences, he (like so many others) point to a number of sources, including and especially the natural world, literature, travel, dreams, and, of course, other artists, particularly the Europeans and some Americans during the early stages of Modernism (late 19th and early 20th century). Schumacher says he’s particularly drawn to creative expression that explores that area where the representational and the abstract meet. If forced to describe his art, he says one might think of it as a form of “muted expressionism.”
For a small sampling of some of his recent work, go to: pinterest.com
Martin Schumacher was born in Poughkeepsie, New York (on the grounds of Vassar College), came of age in the Midwest (at Oberlin College) and, after some time on the West Coast and Mexico, has lived nearly all of his adult life in and around Boston, Massachusetts.
An early interest in drawing and film led him to art school in the mid 1970s, working primarily in drawing and experimental animation. Many years later — after a career in publishing/communications and raising a family — Schumacher recently returned to his early interest in the visual arts, currently focusing on monotypes and mixed media, often creating what he calls “monotype collages.”
He currently resides in Concord, Massachusetts with his wife Margaret and their two cats Otis and Roscoe.