← Back to Artists

Neil Martin

Neil Martin
  • Work
  • Biography
I originally trained and worked as a Graphic Designer, but felt that my true vocation lay in working with the beautiful material that is wood.

Working predominantly with native Scottish hardwoods such as Ash, Elm, Oak, Sycamore, Walnut, and Yew.

Each piece I create is highly individual. I start with timber in it’s rawest form after being kiln, solar, or air dried. The process is part design, part intuition, often using a ‘direct carving’ approach, responding directly to the timber without any preconceived idea of the outcome. Much like an artist would add layers to a painting until they are satisfied, I am stripping away the layers until I feel enough of the wood is exposed.

I try not to change too much of what nature has created, instead focusing on the inherent beauty of the wood and give it a second life through my work.

Since the pandemic, I have been exploring the ancient Japanese technique of ‘Yakisugi’ ( commonly known as ‘Shou sugi ban’ in the west). The process of burning timber was traditionally used to prevent decay for exterior timber buildings. Scorching the timber leaves a beautiful and distinctive finish to my sculptures, and a lovely contrast with the unscorched grain pattern. Resulting in tactile and desirable forms.
▪️ 3 Harbours Exhibition, Cockenzie Power Station, East Lothian
▪️ 'Indian Summer' Craft Shop, Royal Exchange Theatre, Manchester
▪️ The Page Gallery, Pittenweem Arts Festival, Fife
▪️ 'Art for Children' Save The Children, Robert Gordon University, Aberdeen
▪️ 'Natural Beauties' The Park Gallery, Falkirk
▪️ Visual Arts Scotland, Royal Scottish Academy, Edinburgh
▪️ Scottish Furniture Makers Association, Ocean Terminal, Edinburgh
▪️ 'All Wrapped Up', Royal Botanical Gardens, Edinburgh
▪️ The Line Gallery, Linlithgow
▪️ Concrete Wardrobe, Edinburgh
▪️ Cecilia Colman, London
▪️ Off The Wall, Corebridge, Northumberland
▪️ Gold Gallery, Edinburgh
▪️ The Salt Gallery, Cornwall
▪️ Stenton Gallery, East Lothian
▪️ Studio 46, East Lothian
▪️ The Strathearn Gallery, Crieff
▪️ Q2 Queen's Gallery, Dundee

▪️ Visual Arts Scotland
▪️ Scottish Furniture Makers Association

▪️ Hope Scott Trust

▪️ Homes Interiors Scotland, The Luxe Edition 2019
▪️ No.1 magazine ‘Made in Scotland’ article, 2017
▪️ Scotland on Sunday feature in 'At home' magazine, 2004 (2 Nov. p. 20)
▪️ Scotland on Sunday feature in 'Spectrum' magazine, 2003 (26 Oct. p.12,13,15)
▪️ Homes and Interiors Scotland magazine, feature on commissioning Scottish Furniture Makers (issue number 31 Sept-Oct 2003, pages 62-68)
Contrast Forms
  • Neil Martin
  • Contrast Forms
  • Woodwork
Ellipse Form V (yakisugi)
  • Neil Martin
  • Ellipse Form V (yakisugi)
  • Woodwork
Elm Form (cold cast bronze)
  • Neil Martin
  • Elm Form (cold cast bronze)
  • Woodwork
Spalted beech and scorched lid Box
  • Neil Martin
  • Spalted beech and scorched lid Box
  • Woodwork
Wave Form (yakisugi) Gold
  • Neil Martin
  • Wave Form (yakisugi) Gold
  • Furniture
Spalted beech and Bog oak
  • Neil Martin
  • Spalted beech and Bog oak
  • Woodwork
Fissure Form (yakisugi) Gold
  • Neil Martin
  • Fissure Form (yakisugi) Gold
  • Woodwork
Strata Form (yakisugi) Gold
  • Neil Martin
  • Strata Form (yakisugi) Gold
  • Woodwork