by Diane Herman

 

Exposures International Gallery of Fine Art was established on October 1, 1996. My husband, Marty Herman, and I built the gallery on a foundation of honesty, integrity, hard work and love. We share a passion for the fine arts, and the gallery was our opportunity to create a venue showcasing art that would affect the world in a really positive way. A labor of love is the expression people use when their passion becomes their life’s work. Nothing could be truer of our gallery; it is built from pure love.

Marty and Diane Herman, owners of Exposures Fine Art Gallery

We are honored that we have been able to grow our gallery to be not only the largest gallery in Sedona but the largest in the Southwest, and we enjoy being told by visitors that we are one of the most unique in the world.” – Marty Herman

 

A Little Bit about Marty…

Marty was born and raised in New York City. He studied photographic art before his life was interrupted by the Vietnam War, where he was a combat photographer and also served with the photo intelligence branch of the U.S. Air Force. Post-Vietnam, he worked in New York and Hollywood as a motion picture cameraman, documenting the Apollo Space Program’s landing on the moon. In addition, he worked for “REI” Italian Radio and Television Network as an assistant cameraman. In 1975, Marty founded a Los Angeles-based advertising agency, “JAM Advertising Ink.” The $10 million agency specialized in marketing companies from around the world that wanted to penetrate the tough Los Angeles market. Its clients included Toshiba, Coca-Cola, Ritz Cameras, Oshman’s Sporting Goods, Laserium, and University Stereo. Marty’s commitment to honesty and integrity, combined with hard work in advertising and marketing, built University Stereo from $2.7 to more than $40 million in annual sales. As a result, Marty was awarded the “National Retailer of the Year Award” for consumer electronics. He was also named to the list of “Top 100 Executives” by the Los Angeles Times. Marty is continuously invited by some of the world’s largest international manufacturers and leaders to express his thinking. He is recognized as one of the world’s opinion leaders in his field.

A Little Bit About Diane…

I was born and raised in the beautiful State of Virginia. Throughout my childhood, I was involved in performing arts, fine arts, competitive sports and equestrian showing. I completely immersed myself in every activity, demonstrating a limitless passion for creativity and learning. These years taught me about the exhilaration of artistic expression, and also about dedication, determination and hard work, all of which are absolutely necessary for the creation of art with impact. I continued my pursuit of the fine arts even after I graduated from Old Dominion University with a Bachelor of Science in Dental Hygiene. Just days after graduation, I drove across the country to the Gold Coast of southern California and focused my passion for art on my career as a dental hygienist and on my continuing studies at UCLA. If I learned just one lesson from my classes in painting, dancing and acting, it was that everything can be an art form. My philosophy, enthusiasm and dedication transformed the dental practice as people began to recognize the extraordinary effort and care that comprised my “Everything is Art” approach to their care. My patients’ appreciation and accolades reinforced my conviction that this was the ideal recipe for life.

I had the artistry of my profession, a hugely successful start to my career and the satisfaction of making my own way in the world. I was not looking for love, so I was completely unprepared for when Marty Herman walked into my life!

A Romantic Courtship…

My Southern upbringing would not permit me to go on a date with a patient (it would not be professional!) so I declined Marty’s invitation to go bike riding. But Marty returned with flowers and impressive persistence: he signed up for the three-visit Plaque Control Program that I taught! When I still would not go on a date with him, he threw a party for the entire office and I had to go! His kindness, sensitivity, integrity and his romancing of me were absolutely, mesmerizingly wonderful. How could I resist him? He won my heart completely.

Sailing Around the World…

Two years later in October of 1983, Marty and I were married in a rainforest in Kauai, Hawaii. We honeymooned aboard Marty’s 60’ yacht named “HAIG MATS,” an acronym for Honesty And Integrity Got Me All This Stuff. We traveled the world for nearly five years. The sailing experience taught us the greatest lessons of life. One is that sailing will either break a marriage or make it stronger. We faced fierce weather, pirates and The Engine Room From Hell. We were forced to rely on each other completely. During those years, we learned about courage, patience, discipline, compassion, perspective and our own personal characters. It was, and has remained, the most defining experience of our lives.

Finding Sedona…

After sailing, Marty and I looked for a place to set down roots. Our number one requirement was a place with clean air. We called the Environmental Protection Agency in Washington, D.C. and were told that the Four Corners area of the Southwest had some of the cleanest air in the country. After moving to beautiful Sedona, we settled into a modest home and set up a porch swing that faced the red rocks and some of the most amazing sunsets on earth. We were ready to settle into our retirement, but true relaxation eluded us! Our tensions made no sense to us after all the challenges we had faced. It was at that moment we both realized that if you are able, it is a privilege to work. We both loved working and being productive and moving forward, but we were not doing that! As we rocked on the swing, we began to dream about what kind of small “Ma and Pa” business we would create. We wanted to incorporate the most important things in our lives: the love, honor and respect we held for each other, our love of the arts, a desire to give back to the community that had welcomed us, and a chance to change the world for the better by representing art and artists in a place where these efforts can be seen and appreciated.

The Gallery’s Early Years…

We decided to buy a small gallery named Gallery of the West. It was a family-owned business that was about to close. The landlord of the complex at that time told us that all we had to do was wait for that gallery to go out of business and we could have their space without paying anything for ownership. God bless Marty, he said, “We are not going to start off any business doing that to anyone.” So, with honesty and integrity, we approached the owners of the gallery and purchased Gallery of the West outright. Then we changed the name to Exposures – Gallery of the West as a nod to Marty’s photography background. The next three years were filled with wonderful experiences and discoveries as we learned how to own and run a gallery. At the heart of our gallery, we held onto the belief that the arts are, and should be, an essential part of every person’s life. As we dedicated our efforts to promoting the artwork and discovering new artists, in turn, more and more people began to discover our gallery. We expanded twice and doubled our floor space, and still we did not have enough room!

Finding the Gallery’s Current Space…

Exposures – Gallery of the West moved to its current location in October 1999. Previously, the building was a famous restaurant called The Oak Creek Owl. Later, a timeshare company bought it and divided it into small office suites. The building was not even on the market, and I thought never in a million years would we be able to purchase it, but I knew in my heart that it was the perfect place for our growing gallery. We decided to make an offer, but the moment people heard about our interest we were outbid. Marty refused to get involved in a bidding war and I remember breaking down in tears from the disappointment. I had no reason to be so emotional about this property, but it called to me! I felt like my emotions were being controlled by something much greater than me. Then, after a year of pursuing the property, Marty and I had a meeting in the parking lot with nine men and a realtor. These nine men told us that the calculator makes the decisions, and my response was, “Doesn’t a good soul ever count anymore?” Marty leaned over to me and said, “I can’t believe you just said that. That was embarrassing to say that to these men who are standing in the 90 degree heat with suits and ties on.” I never regretted speaking my mind; I knew how much Marty and I wanted to do something good with that building. We received a call the next day, and were stunned when we were told that somehow I had managed to reach right into the hearts of these men and cause them to rethink the matter. We had the building!

A Labor of Love and a Love of the Arts …

When we moved to the new building, the name of the gallery became Exposures International Gallery of Fine Art to reflect the range of artists we represented and to acknowledge the over 40,000 clients who visited us from around the country and the world. The gallery grew at a phenomenal rate and Marty and I ran at full speed, giving everything we had, and loving every minute of it. We appreciated everything about the gallery: how it gave artists a platform to delight the world with their art; how it gave visitors the opportunity to fall in love with artwork; and most of all, how it gave us the opportunity to meet so many wonderful people from all over the world. It was, and continues to be, an honor for us to promote and encourage artists.

Exposures International boasts an expansive 20,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor art display filled with sculptures, paintings, fine art jewelry and mixed media creations. We represent over a hundred of the most famous national and international fine artists in the world, and yet it is still not enough! If I had my way, we would showcase hundreds of artists’ works! As it is, the gallery receives over 2,000 artist submissions each year, and Marty and I must narrow the selection yearly to only two or three artists for inclusion in the gallery’s prestigious ever-expanding collection. Marty and I want to offer a distinctive art collecting experience to every person who visits our gallery. We want to do it our way instead of how we are “supposed” to do it. In our minds, the only way to do this is to make the gallery an art form in and of itself… an embodiment of “Art.” After all, art connects our past, our present and the future. All of us are creations. All of us are “Art.”

Art Makes People Feel Good…

In our experience, art definitely makes people feel better. Our mission is to create an unparalleled environment of artistic enjoyment for our visitors, so that when they come to our gallery they feel good. We work to provide a supportive platform for our artists, because when they are creating art they feel good, as well. We also take an active role in the community, donating proceeds from art sales (totaling over $30,000) to “Meals on Wheels,” because we believe art should have the power to make everyone feel wonderful.

Our service to the community also includes Marty’s past tenure as Vice Chairman of the Sedona Art & Culture Commission, and years of participation with the Sedona Gallery Association, where he created the First Friday art walk event to promote the fine arts. We also donated $10,000 to the city of Sedona to build the events marquee sign to promote the performing arts.

Looking to the Future…

For over fifteen years, Marty and I have focused all of our efforts on Sedona, and now we are ready to shift that focus to include bigger and more prosperous cities. We are poised to deliver Exposures International Gallery to the world!

Currently, there is only one Exposures International Gallery of Fine Art, yet every day we are asked if we have locations in other parts of the world. Our visitors are amazed by what they see when they walk through our doors and we receive dozens of accolades each day: “Thank you for being here!” “This is the most beautiful gallery I have ever seen!” and “How can there be this much talent in the world!” We pride ourselves on offering a range of art that will appeal to everyone, whether an appreciator or a serious art collector, or just “one of us folks”.

Join Our Journey…

Marty joins me in thanking all of you for being part of our journey. We will be forever grateful for the genuine friendships, the support and, best of all, the love the gallery brings to us. Exposures International Gallery is for you to view (and hopefully acquire) a variety of extraordinary talent that comes from around the world, housed in one location. When you come into Exposures International Gallery hopefully you will have an experience like no other. You are always invited. We can’t wait to see and meet you!

With Lots of Love and Respect We Welcome You with Open Arms,

Diane O. Herman & Marty L. Herman (a.k.a. Martii)

Marty is also a represented artist in Exposures Gallery, using the name MARTII, displaying Fine Art Photography with prints as large as 12 feet in length.