Artists » Robin Reynolds

Robin Reynolds Portrait Painting“There is a tension that exists between order and chaos.  I have always been drawn to spaces in nature where most would see disorder and complete randomness, but, in fact, a structure exists and my garden was no exception.

In the past I have gravitated toward spaces that are not pretty; most would pass them by.  So how could I attempt to paint something that already was beautiful? Why would I want to paint dahlias, geraniums, roses and other flowers that most stand in awe of just walking by. I remember in graduate school my professors saying,’ Don’t say something is beautiful. A painting must stand on its own merit and not because the image within the painting is beautiful.’  I have loved my garden for so many years, but have feared painting it because of those voices in my head telling me a critic would comment, ‘That’s a pretty painting.’  These have been my fears and challenges in painting this new body of work, The Garden Series.”

“At the same time as painting The Garden Series, I have continuously painted tide pools in Maine. Like flowers, the snails, mussels and seaweed have a beauty all their own.  Under a thin veil of water, with the sun gleaming down, I manipulate the shells, seaweed and sand to recreate the glow that emanates from within.

My concern has not been about creating a beautiful painting in looking at my garden or the tide pools, but rather reacting to the color, line, texture and space between the flowers and bushes, shells and sand, and ground and sky. As Joan Mitchell once stated about her La Grand Vallee Series, ‘What excites me when I’m painting is what one color does to another in terms of space and interaction.’ It is the small details of ripening orange euonymus berries against red geraniums, pink dahlias floating amongst a sea of white alyssum or icy blue mussels nestled between slippery, golden seaweed. These images provide me the information needed to transform nature and weave a relationship between abstraction and representation.

Although beautiful, I focused on the essence of the garden and tide pools allowing the painting to take precedence. I was not concerned with a literal depiction of the landscape, but rather a sense of place, carefully constructed and woven together to form my vision of nature.”

1999 MFA – Painting Savannah College of Art & Design, Savannah, GA

1990 BFA – Painting Massachusetts College of Art, Boston, MA

1986 BA – Art History & Economics Colby College, Waterville, ME

2013 • Best Painting Award, Arts Worcester Biennial, Juror: Katharine French, Director, Danforth Museum

2005 • Sally R Bishop Prize for Best of Show, ARTS Worcester Biennial Juror: Nicholas J. Capasso , Curator, DeCordova Museum

2004 • Best Oil Painting Award, G.Roddy Competition, Concord Art Association Juror: Rachel Rosenefield Lafo, Curator, DeCordova Museum

2000 • Massachusetts Professional Grant, Massachusetts Cultural Council• Fellowship, Dorland Mountain Arts Colony

1999 • Fellowship, Millay Colony for the Arts• Honorable Mention, Arts Worcester Biennial

1999• Honorable Mention, Dimensions

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