Lifting the Veil
Robin Cole’s forthcoming exhibition at Gallery 1261, titled Animas, takes a closer look at life “behind the veil.” While many know the Coloradobased artist for her drawings and encaustics, this is the first show of Cole’s to feature only her oil paintings, all of which incorporate some element of nature within them.
“Everything gives off a particular emotional resonance…and I’m really intrigued by that,” Cole says. Without developing too direct a narrative, she aspires to hint at something beyond the ordinary or physical, and this is the first show where she has “unapologetically dived” into that. Cole’s new body of work includes depictions of stones and boulders on a forest floor, a starry night sky, a girl’s head topped with a crown of twigs and leaves, and a doe hiding in the brush, among others. Cole says that Jungian psychology and the literary genre of magical realism inspire and inform her work.
In My Lady’s House, a portrait of Cole’s close friend, is a metaphor for the idea that the earth is home to every living creature that inhabits it—and this work further explores the symbiotic relationships between these creatures. Although bees swirl above her head, the subject of the painting wears a serene expression, perfectly at ease with life around her. Rather than conflict, there is harmony. “I try to hint at the things I want to say in subtle ways,” says Cole.
“Since the earliest days of my life, nature has been my home...When I’m dealing in the symbolic realm
artistically, the images are almost always having to do with nature...It feels like a native language to me,” the artist says. “I think of it as a primal mirror for the psyche. My work is an exploration of an inner wilderness by way of an outer wilderness.”
Cole’s solo exhibition will be on view October 6 through 27 with an opening
reception from 6 to 9 p.m.
2Swallowtails,oil on mounted linen, 28 x 43"2
1Hearken,oil on mounted linen, 20 x 20"1
3Flicker,oil on linen, 46 x 28"3