Martin Antaramian, Kenosha
2016–17 RAM Artist Fellowship Award Recipient
Photography: Camela Langendorf, Varitay Studios
Martin Antaramian is a sculptor from Kenosha who specializes in furniture design. A 2011 graduate of University of Wisconsin-Parkside, Antaramian uses his work to draw attention to the construction, function, and form of all objects. His recent works have been inspired by the movement of fabric. While entirely wood-carved pieces are his primary focus, he also enjoys metal work, sometimes incorporating cast bronze accents into his designs. Antaramian exhibits his work regularly and has won numerous awards, with special attention coming to recent furniture pieces that explore movement. He and his process for creating sculptural tables were featured on Handcrafted America in 2016.
What makes something real? This question is what drives my artwork. We created words so that we may label and describe what we observe. The creation of a formal language completely changed the way in which we perceive our world. Our realities have become constructed around objects or ideas that we can label and understand.
The inspiration for my artwork comes from the desire to make objects that break down people’s preconceived notions of what things should look like. For me, every single object in our world is sculptural, and I encourage people to see them as such.
Most of my work is wood carving—I like to make furniture that is sculptural in order to point out that just because something serves a purpose does not mean it cannot also be a work of art. For this past year, inspired by the movement of fabric, I have been pushing the concept of wood-carving to new limits as I craft a Victorian dress out of cherry wood.