Robin Reynolds’ paintings are her interpretation of nature. She is not concerned with a literal depiction of the landscape, but rather a sense of place. Painting on location (plein air) she focuses on places where most would see disorder and complete randomness. Yet Reynolds finds the structure inherent within the landscape, rendering the tension between order and chaos.
In this new body of work, Reynolds merely walked out her backdoor into her garden and began the arduous task of trying to paint flowers without making them too flowerlike or beautiful. Instead she concentrated on the color, line, texture and space between the flowers, bushes, ground and sky. What is achieved is a luminosity carefully constructed through thin layers of paint built up and scraped away, as well as maximizing the smooth gessoed surface of her boards.
In 2015 Reynolds had a one person show at Tower Hill Botanic Gardens in West Boylston, MA. She had four one person shows in 2013 and 2014. Carver Hill Gallery in Rockland, Maine in 2014 and Prince Street Gallery in New York City, Gerald Peters Gallery in Santa Fe, New Mexico and her fourth one person show at Soprafina Gallery in Boston, Massachusetts in 2013. Robin Reynolds received her M.F.A. from Savannah College of Art & Design. She has studied further at the Stonington Painters Workshop, Stonington, ME., the Dorland Mountain Arts Colony, Temecula, CA, and the Millay Colony for the Arts, Austerlitz, NY among other residencies.
Reynolds has been the recipient of prestigious recent awards including an Arts Worcester Material Grant, the Best of Show at the ARTSWorcester Biennial two times, juried by Katharine French, Director of The Danforth Museum and by Nicholas J. Capasso, curator, DeCordova Museum and Best Oil Painting Award at the G.Roddy Competition at the Concord Art Association. Her work has been exhibited in solo and group shows throughout the United States. Reynolds presently lives and works in North Brookfield, MA with her husband and three daughters.
“A bit nippy. I’ve got my orange hunting hat and my boots on. Fingers still cold though. Thank goodness the red dahlia is still there.”
I paint outside in my garden. The unstructured flora, reminiscent of an English cottage garden, draws me in as it is constantly in a state of flux, leaving the reins of control up to me. There is a tension that exists between seeing what’s in front of me and responding to it. This order/chaos of the garden seduces me as I get to pick and choose how I compose my painting. How the painting begins and ends are never predetermined.
A quick charcoal drawing delineating shapes and space begins the journey. I shift my eye, as well as move potted plants around to initiate the excitement I find in varying textures, colors and shapes. 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 dahlia floating amongst a sea of white alyssum and purple lavender feathering between ice blue dusty miller. These images provide me the information needed to transform nature and weave a relationship between abstraction and representation.
Beauty, the waning environment and its’ political nature are all at the forefront of these untraditional landscape paintings. Not interested in creating a trivial prettiness, but beauty exudes and I attack forcefully. Layers of paint slide onto the smooth surface, although always looking, an imaginative editing ensues wiping away and layering with more energetic brushwork. A lyrical energy – a kind of wholeness develops. Form and structure emerge. Returning to the same site, a poetic mediation occurs. The dynamic nature of my garden allows me to find a holiness in the landscape as well as the ability to constantly surprise myself in every painting.
Fellowship, Vermont Studio School
Brooke Reeve Jr. Painting Scholarship, Savannah College of Art & Design • Savannah Sketchbook Scholarship, Savannah College of Art & Design
Fine Arts 2D Auction Award, Massachusetts College of Art
Award for Excellence in Painting, Massachusetts College of Art