Artist Robin Hanway blurs the line between reality and metaphor with her fluid marine still life paintings. After a long career as a landscape architect in the Seattle area, Robin returned to the east coast several years ago to delve back into her training as a painter. With a focus on still life arrangements, Robin draws inspiration from the ever changing variables of space, time and light. "I particularly like the contrast of loose fluid backgrounds with tightly rendered naturalistic forms," she says. "It creates a loose metaphor for species, evolution, development, predation, sex, movement and finally death." In addition to painting, Robin teaches classes in landscape design. Her artwork has been showcased at exhibitions in New York, Virginia and North Carolina. She graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts from Virginia Commonwealth University in Richmond, Virginia.
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About The Artist
I am composing a series of marine still lifes that explore the effects of fluid water media with the figurative representations of sea creatures - sea stars, snails and Crassostrea virginica, the common oyster. In some paintings, the creatures are living characters, in others, clearly fossils and empty shells. I particularly like the contrast of loose fluid backgrounds with tightly rendered naturalistic forms, and also enjoy the painterly dissolutions of form into line and blurred shape - in a loose metaphor for species evolution, development, predation, sex, movement and finally death. My inspirations are numerous, and include the Pre-Raphaelite watercolors of John Ruskin and the tonalist watercolors of contemporary artist Charles Ritchie, as well as the process paintings of Amie Oliver, and the writings of biochemist Nick Lane. I think of these works on paper as akin to musical variations, and the nearly infinite possibilities of the water medium, which incorporates chance, accident and intention, like evolution itself.
Virginia Commonwealth University
Bachelor of Fine Arts, 1978