Oil/Encaustic on Panel, 44″ X 44″
Ltd. Edition Print
This piece was both emotional and revelatory for me. Contemplating this circle of life is thrilling and sometimes pensive. We all want more time, love, surprise, mystery, more fulfillment and meaning, resources, and of course, freedom. Conjuring ‘infinity’ has never been easy for humans but this piece gained speed and momentum when the idea of the potential of ‘seeds’ occurred to me. Beginnings, apparent endings and transitions beget celebrations within the infinite nature of all life. Since these paintings take months, this one was punctuated by a dive trip to Tonga where I swam with the humpback whales and their young who travel from Antarctica to give birth, nurture the babies, teach them to breach for their cardiovascular strength and then return to their frigid home. It was a deeply moving experience of trust between the whales and we humans, getting up close when the babies were curious and staying calm and quiet next to these mega-ton monoliths. In the evenings on the deck we could see our Milky Way and hear the whale songs while floating on the black velvet calm sea.
Fortified to paint this piece asked for my reverence and a reinterpretation of the meaning of Infinity. Live while you’re alive. And treasure the opportunity. The painting took on a feeling of joy and freedom to play on this board. The eye of the whale, the constellation of Scorpio on the trip, expressions of seeds and their ancient significance especially today, and my father Cecil. He was a gentle soul. He would hike and camp in the back country and creatures would come up to his campfire uninhibited. In the winters, he put speakers outside his house to provide the Sound of Music to the animals. Living in the mountains where the growing season for a vegetable garden was short and the bunnies and gophers plentiful, I got a glimpse into how others saw my Dad when he died. We drove up a dusty remote road to the cemetery and while he didn’t want a funeral, people began driving, parking and walking to create a circle of friendship, most of whom I’d not met. One man stepped forward and said he’d asked Cecil what kind of methods and pesticides he used to preserve his garden. Then told all of us that he had learned so much when my Dad replied, ‘Oh I don’t worry about that, I just plant twice as much’.
A piece of my work ‘Leap of Faith’ was exhibited in a Science and Art show at the San Diego Institute of Art and in a piece written about my art they said: Artist Becky Robbins employ a process that parallels one used by scientists and technologists. It begins with an idea, which then gives rise to questions that become the subject of research and assessment. Models and prototypes develop. Links among the various elements emerge: sometimes they’re obvious, sometimes vague, and now and again utterly unexpected. Robbins believes that everything is ultimately connected, and that a body is a whole, an integrated system, not simply discreet parts.
“I prefer to paint optimistically,” she says. “I don’t want to add more fraught art to the world. We need to have hope, be part of the world, and participate in our own rescue.”