If we look to past periods of upheaval, we see many forces coming into play to form our modern society. We are living through a period of stress and social separation, the impact of which is changing us. It is not unusual to picture the artist working alone in his studio, but that separation does not distance the artist from the community any more than culture is separate from the society that produces it. Today, the artists with whom the gallery works have been affected by the pandemic. Their work shows the impact, some in subtle changes in studio operations and others in the content of their work. Some are creating pictures of our experiences, and others predict where we are headed.
Robin Rose retreated from Washington DC to the safety of his Delaware beach cabin to create the paintings for his Spring 2021 show. From there, he was able to open himself up to the drama transpiring before our eyes. As the work progressed, it became apparent that each painting would make tangible his internal responses to conditions created by the pandemic and the political madness of the past year. There are 19 paintings in the group. Rose begins each, not with an image in mind, but a title. Focusing first on the title, he dispenses with any need for superfluous consistency in style. Rose was free to unleash the virtuosity of his encaustic painting skills in service to pure expression. As we have looked to the art from the past to map the evolution of our culture, Rose brings in to view the changes in which we are presently engaged.
Robin Rose (American, born 1946) works within the demanding field of encaustic painting. Through an incomparable mastery of this medium, one of the oldest forms of painting, Rose presents concepts germinated from the latest technological advancements, archeological discoveries, and systems analysis. Rose's abstractions suggest something familiar, driving the viewer towards an intuitive understanding of complex content through a far-reaching variety of colors, textures, and visual effects. Robin Rose’s work is included in the collections of the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden, the Smithsonian American Art Museum, and The Phillips Collection, Washington DC, among other private and public collections.
Robin Rose: 19 Paintings is concurrent with Hedieh Javanshir Ilchi: Listen to the night as it makes itself hollow on view at HEMPHILL April 1 - May 28, 2021.