Martin is proudly carrying his family tradition forth as he lives, creates and teaches in the hills of Western Massachusetts. His work spans a wide range of media from Drawing, Painting, Sculpture, Theater Design and Site Specific Installations to Performance.
One of the most central themes to Martin’s work is an exploration of the natural world and our place as humans in relation to the web of life that we are a part of. His work bridges realms of science and mysticism in an effort to challenge the cultural paradigms that dictate how we relate to both the natural world as well as our brothers and sisters. As an avid Permaculture designer he strives to create work that improves his own awareness of how he relates to the natural world and invites viewers to contemplate how to live in better balance with the world around us. His Permaculture works have been shared in international publications and educational material. Through his work he hopes to inspire and cultivate a greater sense of mystery and possibility in our experience of the world.
From the very beginning of my life Art has been one of the most central and important aspects of my being. As my twin brother Carl and I were raised by an artist and teacher, George Leighton Bridge III, we were exposed to a wide range of media with which to explore and create. Museums and Galleries were always frequent family destinations. In my father’s early life he was inspired by the work of his Uncle, Master Sculptor Clark Battle Fitz-Gerald and apprenticed to him for some time. Clark’s son, Stephen Fitz-Gerald, has also followed in his father’s footsteps as he lives and works in Santa Rosa Ca. I feel blessed to have had such a deep immersion in the arts and to have many family members from which to learn and draw inspiration from.
An important influence and element of my work is my spiritual path as an animist. The fascination and reverence I hold for the spirits of the natural world directs most of my work. I also hold a Universalist mentality in seeking out the truths in different religions and mystery traditions. As I greatly revere the wonder and mystery inherent in the natural world, intentionally exploring my relationship with it is a huge part of my life. Our culture’s relationship, or lack thereof, with nature is an important part of my work. Issues concerning sustainability have lead me to study and implement elements of Permaculture Design and has inspired a great deal of my work.
Many of my works strive to honor small but critical elements of our ecosystem that are often overlooked. The creation of these works for me become a meditation on complex dynamics and how I both affect and am affected by them. One of my greatest hopes as an artist is to inspire others to help mend the sacred covenant between mankind and the web of life on earth, which gives and sustains our lives. It is that desire that drives me to try and create palpable connections between my artwork and the environment around me as I try to achieve a better balance in how I live.
I am intensely driven to be involved with and support communities and movements that challenge the dominant cultural paradigms of how we interact and spend time with one another (both in the human world and beyond) and where we place value in our lives. I dedicate a great amount of time and energy to staffing and presenting within a number of spiritually based and creative communities through regular celebrations, retreats and events, including CoSM (the Chapel of Sacred Mirrors), Earthspirit’s “Rites of Spring”, and “Twilight Convening” , The Spiritfire Festival and more. While central, my work as an artist extends beyond the visual arts. I am an avid Drummer, dancer and student of Martial Arts. In 2002 I helped co found and act as one of the lead facilitators at the Ritual Arts Drum and Dance Circles. To me all these practices have strong connective threads and the lessons I have learned as a musician and mover have had direct influence on my work and teaching in the visual arts, particularly as it pertains to collaboration. I have a strong affinity for Live Painting and have been a featured painter at CoSM for years as well as numerous music and Transformational Festivals including Lightning in a Bottle, Unifier, Gem and Jam and Great North as well having worked directly along with music acts including Beats Antique, Sphongle, The Dessert Dwellers, Living Light, Elderflux and more. I feel these opportunities have helped me connect with audiences, many of whom are seeking alternatives to popular culture. My hope is that through my work I can help inspire others to find a greater sense of mystery and satisfaction in the world around them.
“Martin Bridge is a gifted visionary artist whose imagery informs and inspires viewers. His live-painting performances stimulate audiences at festivals around the world. Artist, educator, mycologist, and avid student of permaculture, Martin models an integral creative life that reflects the ideals of a new world paradigm celebrating the sacred intelligence of nature.
— Alex Grey & Allyson Grey