Elise Marie Martin

Elise Marie Martin is an interdisciplinary artist based in Detroit, working in the areas of painting, video, sculpture and fiber arts. Her work stems from an interest in human interaction and the struggles to maintain empathy, intimacy and shared connection. Tapping into the rich vocabulary of visual language, she aims to map out the often ineffable nuances of the every-day relationship dynamics which are so significant yet so frequently taken for granted. 

" My work often takes on varied forms.  Sometimes I might try to capture intimacy of human connection through charts, maps and pictorial representations. Other times, I will focus more on the creation of physical objects , which invite actual engagement and  touch. 

As a maker of objects, I am interested in how material objects influence and mediate relationships between people; how non-human actors influence human interactions and how we ourselves become objects in certain relationship dynamics.

Looking at objects which act as a stand-in for human touch, both historically and in contemporary societies, I have been trying to push the concept to encompass other types of intimate connection. How can an inanimate object care for you while you are sick, for example.. or offer you encouragement? How can a material object at once care for your spiritual, emotional and physical needs? How can objects "fix" what is broken in human relationships and empathy dynamics?

I don't know that any object or collection of objects could ever  be a substitute for human to human engagement, but there is certainly something uncomfortable about the idea, and that unease is really interesting to me, particularly as human relationships seem to become increasingly passive."

Education and Awards

Select Exhibitions

Bio: b. 1990


Lives and works in Detroit, Michigan USA.



2019- Present MFA Candidate in Fibers

Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan, USA

2012 BFA Fine Arts

The College for Creative Studies, Detroit, Michigan, USA 



2019-2020 Wayne State University Graduate Teaching Assistantship 

2019- Touchstone Center for Arts and Crafts Merit Scholarship Recipient

2019 Spoonflower Student Project Grant Recipient

2018 Best in Show Award, 96th Annual All Media Exhibition, Ann Arbor Art Center

2017-18 Teaching Artist Residency, ProjectArt and Detroit Public Libraries

2016- Teaching Artist Residency with Mt. Clemens Public HS and The Anton Art Center, Mt. Clemens, MI

2015-19 Artist in Residence at Fortress Studios, Detroit, MI

2012- Gastatelierprogramm Artist Fellowship and Residency at ATELIERFRANKFURT, Frankfurt a.M. Germany

Solo Exhibitions

2017- Einfuhlung, Hatch Art/Cafe 1923, Hamtamck, MI

2017- Millennial Musings- Caroline Del Guidice and Elise Martin, Hatch Art, Hamtramck, MI

2014- Operation!- Video Screening, Hamtramck, MI

2013- Issues With Empathy, North End Studios, Detroit, MI

2012- Han(ds) Sel(f) (re)Gret All, Atelier Frankfurt, Frankfurt a. M, Germany

2012- Sons of Abraham- Video Screening, A. Alfred Taubman Center, Detroit, MI

2011- Feral Swine [Take Back Detroit]- Video Screening, Garfield Building, Detroit, MI


Select Group Exhibitions

2020- All Media Exhibition, Detroti Artist's Market, Detroit, MI

2019- Durable/Flexible, Popps Packing, Hamtramck MI

2019- First We Shape the Tools, Then the Tools Shape Us, Corktown Studios, Detroit MI

2019- Instructor Show, Ann Arbor Art Center, Ann Arbor MI

2019- Michigan Glass Project, The Russel Industrial Center, Detroit MI

2019- Annual All Media Exhibition, Detroit Artists Market, Detroit MI

2019- Night of 1000 Cocks, Public Pool Art Space, Hamtramck MI

2018- 96th Annual All Media Exhibition, Ann Arbor Art Center, Ann Arbor MI

2018- Making Spaces Home, Black Box Gallery, Dearborn, MI

2018- Lemons!, Public Pool Gallery, Hamtramck, MI

2018- Contemporary Portraiture, Black Box Gallery, Dearborn, MI

2018- The Residence, Holding House, Detroit, MI

2018- Exhibitchin, Public Pool Gallery, Hamtramck, MI

2018- Re/VEIW: A CCS Alumni Exhibition, Valade Family Gallery, Detroit, MI

2017- Lounge of Saturn, Popps Packing, Hamtramck, MI

2017- 8bit, Whitdell Arts, Hatch Art, Hamtramck, MI

2017- Re/VEIW: A CCS Alumni Exhibition, Valade Family Gallery, Detroit, MI

2017- Fortress Studios Residents' Exhibition, Cass Cafe, Detroit, MI

2017- Tunnel of Love; Into the Portal, Pikes Gallery, East Pointe, MI

2017- Michigan Annual XLIV, Anton Art Center, Mt. Clemens, MI

2016- Detroit Beinalle, MONA, Armada, MI

2016- Faculty Exhibition, Anton Art Center, Mt. Clemens, MI

2016- Imperfections, Tangent Gallery, Detroit, MI

2016- CUPS, Detroit Artist Market, Detroit, MI

2016- Re/VEIW: A CCS Alumni Exhibition, Valade Family Gallery, Detroit, MI

2016- AND ONCE UPON A TIME: FAIRYTALES, FABLES, & MYTHS, Ellington-White Contemporary Gallery, Fayettville, NC

2016- Women; an Art Exhibition, North End Studios, Detroit, MI

2015- LOT (Lack of Transmission Detroit), North End Studios, Detroit, MI

2015- LOT (Lack of Tranmission Toronto), Lansdowne, Toronto, ON

2015- The Next Big Thing, Museum of New Art, Troy, MI

2015- BYOB [Bring Your Own Beamer] part 2, North End Studios, Detroit, MI

2015- The Door of Opportunity; a city wide traveling art exhibit, Detroit, MI

2015- Help us help you (Grand Reopening), North End Studios, Detroit, MI

2015-The Selfie Show, Museum of New Media, Troy, MI

2014-Dlectricity- Nighttime exhibition of Art + Light, Detroit, MI

2014-Video Drone, The N’Namdi Center for Contemporary Art, Detroit, MI

2013- Spectral Slumber, Jam Handy Center, Detroit, MI

2013- BYOB [Bring Your Own Beamer], North End Studios, Detroit, MI

2012- Where Are They Now? The Anton Art Center, Mount Clemens, MI

2012- Blue Cheer, Cave Gallery, Detroit, MI

2011- Dark Lot, Vacant parking lot/ old Universal Mall, Livonia, MI

2010- Hot Glue Gun, U245 Gallery, Detroit, MI

2010- From the Window to the Wall, Mexican Town, Detroit, MI

2009- Modality, The Russell Industrial Center, Detroit, MI

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