Join us for an afternoon with Chris Martin, the sixth-generation owner of the iconic guitar manufacturer C. F. Martin & Co. Founded in 1833 in New York City, C. F. Martin & Co. has been making the world’s finest acoustic guitars for nearly two hundred years. Chris will bring incredible prototypes from his personal collection at the Martin Guitar Museum and share stories from his thirty-five years at the helm of this American brand. 

For his special talk in association with Storied Strings: The Guitar in American Art, Chris will share about the art of guitars, showing unique instruments that are hand-painted, adorned with jewels, and inlay from his extensive collection. Audience members will get to hear from artist Robert Goetzl, who has painted several instruments for Martin, and hear the priceless instruments played by Martin clinician and singer/songwriter Craig Thatcher.

About C. F. Martin IV (Chris Martin)

C. F. Martin IV, or “Chris,” as he prefers, is the executive chairman of the world-renowned C. F. Martin & Co. and represents the sixth generation of the Martin family to run the business. Martin acoustic guitars are prized worldwide for their exceptional tone, design, craftsmanship and attention to detail. Under Chris Martin’s direction, the company has maintained its integrity and industry-wide respect while growing and prospering to unprecedented manufacturing and sales levels. 

Martin Guitar was founded in 1833 and is headquartered in Nazareth, Pennsylvania.

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About Robert F. Goetzel

Robert F. Goetzl is an award-winning illustrator and painter with thirty-five years of experience in illustration, painting, and design who has designed numerous special instruments for C. F. Martin & Co. He has also illustrated five children’s books, including the acclaimed Many Nations: A Native American Alphabet Book, which received the 1997 Teachers Choice Award. Other notable clients include NASA, New Jersey Bell, Scholastic Inc., the United States Golf Association, the Star-Ledger newspaper, Troll Communications, and Bridgewater Books.

About Craig Thatcher

Craig Thatcher is an international clinician/ambassador for C. F. Martin & Co., a guitar instructor, and a recording artist. Thatcher has performed in over thirty-five different countries and has worked with and opened for artists including John Mayer, Buddy Guy, Derek Trucks, Jonny Lang, Dicky Betts, Marty Stuart, Roseanne Cash, and Roger McGuinn. Craig is the originator and host of the PBS television series Behind the Guitar, where he presents and interviews internationally-known guitarists in front of a live audience. Learn more about his work at 

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