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Martin Mešša is a very good friend of mine. We go back to 1968 when we studied politics and the Charles University in Prague. My stay was just a short one as I transferred to Bratislava to study sociology at the University of Ján Amos Komenský in Bratislava and I left Czecho-Slovakia shortly after my transfer on June 22, 1969. Martin went on to study ethnography in Moscow. We met again few years ago at the festival in Východná and remained good friends ever since.

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During this summer Martin had an exhibit of his wooden pistons at the house of UĽUV the Central Art Works Company in Bratislava.
Martin is an ethnolog with interest in art, literature, music, and social sciences and despite all this, his artistic expression has deep roots in ancient sphere of myth, naive poeticism and immediacy of expression.

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From reality and dreams, without professional intervention he created his own world. Matchless world of poetry of native poets. Very strong inspirational source for Martin is the folk culture, for sure from professional interest.
Martin started woodcarving under guidance of folk carver Pavol Šarišský from Janov near Prešov. He started carving children toys from oak wood and after twelve years he starts to carve pistons, boards and small mangles with relief from linden wood.

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As many other primitive folk artists Martin orientates his creations towards people figurines. His sculptures are not only happy people’s figures and figurines. He carves colorful and exiting world of folk musicians. Separate programs of his creations are motives from Christian iconography, mostly from the New Testament. All his creations are made of one piece of wood. During his creation Martin runs away from reality and he notices and feels the character of wood on one hand and on the other hands he is guided by his internal visions. Martin’s creations have sparse, simple form.

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Martin participates at expositions of wood carvings in Raslavice from 1995. He also participated at exposition in Wzdow in Poland and his works are in private collections in Austria, Australia United States and Canada.

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Published in the Slovak Heritage Live newsletter Volume 8, No.4, Winter 2000
Copyright © Vladimir Linder 2000 
3804 Yale Street, Burnaby, British Columbia, Canada V5C 1P6
The above article and photographs may not be copied, reproduced, republished, or redistributed by any means including electronic, without the express written permission of
Vladimir Linder. All rights reserved.