RememberingGena Brodie Robbins
Acrylic paint, graphite on Stretched canvas New
Finished black edges
Varnished and Ready to hang
Signed on front and back
36" h x 36" w x 1.5" d |7 lbs. 5 oz.
A male and female form face forward in an abstract landscape, the sunset glows brilliantly behind them. The figures are together, but there is a space between them. "The figures are fragments of faded, bittersweet memory - fondness and nostalgia," explains Gena. "The color schemes are a mixture of pastels and bold primaries - found in childhood - against a dark horizon and foreground. Contrasting light rests on the shoulders and edges of the figures, evoking an ambiguous, even mysterious mood."
Part of Gena's ongoing Illumination series, exploring mood and emotion through abstract portraits. She begins each piece with a dark background, adding fast, autonomous and broad marks. As the work progresses, she reveals and wipes away a history of her mark-making, selectively deciding what imagery to keep and what to discard. She continues the process until recognizable imagery and figures materialize. Her reference material for these portraits is mostly color schemes observed in nature or from memory.
Gena Brodie Robbins was raised in Tifton, Georgia where both of her parents were teachers and coaches. When the family went to the beach in the summers, her dad taught her how to paint on sand dollars. She learned how to paint sunsets using the Walter Foster “How to” booklets at the local hobby shop. Gena was also trained at a young age to sing, however, she did not love Latin lyrics and had horrible stage fright - but she knew that she loved visual arts. So, she formally studied art at Valdosta State University with a BFA in Art Education, earned an MFA in Painting at Savannah College of Art and Design, and won a studio space in NYC through SCAD at the Elizabeth Foundation for the Arts. Gena began painting full time after receiving a diagnosis of Generalized Myasthenia Gravis, after moving from Savannah to Atlanta. Her current body of work stems from an interest in the Bay Area Figurative movement of the 1950's and 60's. She explores the various emotions and moods that can be visually created through subtle lighting in combination with the abstract human form. Her painting process involves an immersive experience, where she ends up practically covered in paint, and Gena says that her dogs and cat leave the studio from time to time with a bright green tail or white paws. When she’s not in the studio, Gena is teaching others to paint, enjoying a pot of tea while writing poetry, reading a crime novel, or hiking the Appalachian trails with her labs in the north Georgia mountains.