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Born in Southern Indiana in 1962, Martha Wade currently lives and works in Sonoma County, California. She received a BA in Theater from Oberlin College, refining a theatrical sensibility that has influenced her work as a both a muralist and figurative oil painter. She has studied with painters such as Kaye Pool, Lyndall Bass and Philip Buller.

Ms. Wade's murals can be seen in homes and businesses in the US, Tokyo, Paris, London and the Netherlands Antilles. Recently she has shifted her focus to more personal work, creating figurative paintings on both canvas and fiberglass screen. Her paintings have been featured in numerous juried exhibits in galleries both on and offline.  Her first solo show was in 2015, at the Sebastopol Center for the Arts. Her work is currently being shown at the online venue Ugallery.


I'm often asked about the stories behind my paintings.  I don’t actively look for a narrative. I’ve always had a strong sense of some shadow world which is larger, older, and wilder, a vast reservoir that lies under the skin of the world and just outside the periphery of my vision. The paintings are an attempt to bring a fragment of it into the waking world. I have no direct access, so I try to let it come on its own. This means trying not to think too hard as I choose and place my figures. They go in and are taken out, often many times in a single painting, until they come together in a way that resonates, or creates a dissonance; that projects a singular mood and atmosphere.  The figures create their own narrative, with my guidance, and the meaning, the story, emerges as a projection of the viewer's own internal landscape.


2015        “ conceal | reveal”, Sebastopol Center for the Arts, solo show
2015         Axis Gallery 10th annual juried show, Sacramento
2015        “ Peoples”, Sebastopol Center for the Arts, juried show
2015        “ Chasing the Light (Finding the Shadow)” Still Point Gallery, juried show
2015        “ Red”, Colors of Humanity, online juried show
2014         C14 Contemporary Arts
2014         Kathleen McCallum Gallery
2013         Embarcadero Center Bldg 2, San Francisco, CA
2013         Graton Gallery Partner
2012        “ Harmony”, Phantom IV Gallery, Windsor, CA
2012        “ Go Figure”, Healdsburg Center for the Arts, Healdsburg, CA
2012         Waldron Arts Center, Bloomingotn, IN
2012-16    Sonoma County Art Trails

Owner, Martha Wade Design
Owned and operated a residential and commercial mural painting company. Commercial
clients include:

• Sutter Santa Rosa Regional Health Center, Santa Rosa
• Embassy Suites Hotel, West Virginia
• Millennium Towers, San Francisco
• Rio Suites Hotel, Las Vegas
• Decadent Table, New Mexico
• Luxe Hotel, Los Angeles
• Java City, California

Academy of Art University , San Francisco
Mural Instructor, Fall Semester 2012

Oberlin College, Bachelor of Arts in Theater, May 1985
Danenburg Oberlin In London Program, Seminar in British Theater
Philip Buller, ongoing painting classes 2001–2004
Lyndall Bass, private oil painting instruction, 1980
Kaye Pool, private oil painting instruction, 1978–1979
Santa Rosa Junior College, classes in Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign,
Dreamweaver, HTML/CSS, Web Design

First Place, Fine Arts Festival, Santa Rosa, CA, 2016
First Place, Colors of Humanity, juried online show, 2015
First Place, Fine Arts Festival, Santa Rosa, CA, 2013
Best of Show, Healdsburg Center for the Arts, juried show “Go Figure”, 2012
Election to Phi Beta Kappa Society, May 1985
National Merit Finalist

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