Artist Statement: Cricket is essentially a rural game. More than any other game it is connected to the soil, through pitches and the weather affects all aspects of it. The game itself is full of elegance, grace and power.
The painting attempts to echo these qualities rather than record any given moment. The intrinsic condition of cricket is similar to Greek tragedy where the ens is open to all. The odds, eleven to one, tell it all but there can be many acts to play out before that end is reached.
The work, which is modern rather than post modern in style and approach, keeps the emphasis on the paint and through that light and colour.
The situation depicted floats in its own time and attempts to suggest a single action but viewed form the attitudes of individual players.
The work, by it's different, yet interrelated poses, invites individual interpretation.
Medium: Oil on Canvas
Dimensions: 86 x 103 cms (image size), 88 x 105 cms (framed)
CHG Director's Statement: Horse rider, retired art teacher and cricket tragic – player, SCG Member and Sheffield Shield follower. Robbie is just, generally, a great guy. He is never short of a comment, managing to be simultaneously humourous, laconic and loveable, with a Scottish accent that still tests my ear.
Robbie graduated a three year course at National Arts School (East Sydney Tech) and one year Teachers College. He started teaching at Newcastle High School, before transferring to Broadmeadow High School then onto Singleton and Quirindi for more than three decades.
Robbie enjoys a certain freedom as a painter. He is engrossed by landscapes, and not surprisingly, they form the foundation of most of his paintings. Horses in fields grazing, grouped, and resting, provides a sense of humanity within Robbie’s paintings. It allows the viewer to identify with the painting subjects and relate them back to daily human behaviours. These subjects are at ease within rolling pastures and sweeping, distant mountain ranges.
Contrasting his landscapes is Robbie’s work that exposes rural cricket teams, battling it out on parched pitches. The players often appear stylised, but are still convincing, as their painted forms capture the pose and movement of active players and matches.
Recently, Robbie’s landscape paintings have become especially raw in both choice of colour, and paint application. Instead of groomed pastures, his landscapes now exude an almost tangible energy and tactile element. Robbie’s colours remain harmonious, and often tonal, his skies seem alive.
Robbie revels in all that is rural! His landscapes are places that he loves, and is absorbed by. It is anyone’s guess where Robbie’s talent will progress next.
- Mark Widdup
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