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Robyn Johnsen

Lobby for Local Art

May 1 - June 30

Artist Statement:

When showing my work, it is always my hope that people will always look at the

paintings before reading the title, so they have the opportunity to glean their own

meaning before seeking out my intent.

My work is an exploration of who I am and what I observe. My hope is that they leave

the viewer a little curious, and say something that can't always be put into words, or

illustrate the things about ourselves that we keep guarded. I often use a figure/animal

subject relationship, as the animals afford a way to express a human quality/turmoil/

chaos/sensitivity, in a way I feel is more provocative. In other paintings it is a setting that

draws an analogy about life experiences and observations.

I love painting and working with images, but also obsess over learning new skills. My

most recent obsession has been with silversmithing. It has been interesting to see what

I do with painting begin to merge with my jewelry work, as well as see how the detail

and process of silversmithing is changing my painting process.

It's always an adventure!


Robyn Johnsen is a figurative painter and silversmith living in Hood River, Oregon.

Originally from the midwest, she studied art at the Minneapolis College of Art and Design

and the University of Minnesota. She moved from Minneapolis in 2002, to the Columbia River Gorge with her family, looking for a small yet vibrant community to raise their two children. Sharing her love of art with young people as a high school art teacher for the past 20 years, has been both a joy and challenge.

Process, context, and subject are key aspects of Johnsen's work. Her process sometimes begins with a clear idea (which almost always evolves), and other times, just moving paint around until an image emerges . Having a balance between these two planned and unplanned approaches to creating images, has brought variety to her body of work. The subjects in these paintings are often a way of exploring the quirks, challenges, strengths, and experiences of being a woman, a mother, and an observer.

Her work has been shown at a variety of galleries and venues in Portland and the Columbia

River Gorge area. She has received awards at the annual Best of the Gorge show, an annual

juried exhibit, including 'Best of Show'

Instagram: rmjohnsen

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