Born and raised in Clifton, Texas, Martin Grelle lives with his wife, Joyce, on a small ranch a few miles from town. His studio sits in the picturesque Meridian Creek Valley, surrounded by the oak- and cedar-covered hills of Bosque County, renowned enclave for several elite artists and home to many of his family and friends.
Martin began drawing and painting when he was young. He was fortunate to have James Boren and Melvin Warren, two professional artists and prestigious CAA members, move to the area when he was still in high school; they made a lasting impact on his direction and career. Mentored by Boren, Martin had his first one-man show within a year of graduating high school in 1973. In the 40 years since, he has produced approximately 30 one-man exhibitions and won awards of regional and national importance.
He was invited into CAA membership in 1995, fulfilling a longtime dream. That same year he was invited to participate in the Prix de West Invitational Art Exhibition & Sale at the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum. He is a two-time winner of both the Prix de West Purchase Award and the Buyers’ Choice Award. A CAA Buyers’ Choice Award triple winner, Martin also won the CAA Ray Swanson Memorial Award and a Silver Medal in Water Solubles in 2014.
In 2012, the Briscoe Western Art Museum honored him with the Legacy Award for his impact on Western art. He had a retrospective featured at Gilcrease Museum’s Rendezvous Show in 2013.
Martin has a sense of responsibility to his collectors, which fills his heart every morning when he walks into the studio. He believes what he does is a gift entrusted to him from God that must not go unused or be taken for granted, but developed and improved upon. He strives to pass on what others have passed to him, and has given multiple art demonstrations and donated works to charity. He and his good friend and fellow CAA artist Bruce Greene have taught an annual workshop for more than two decades.
A practice among some American Indian Peoples was the use of a counting rope. This young Cheyenne girl has just tied a second knot in her counting rope indicating that two moons have passed in her pregnancy. Among the items she has near her are a girl’s doll and a young boy’s bow and arrows. She has already been preparing for the child yet to come, and waits with great expectations to bring that life into the world.