One painter + one poet = one contemporary exhibit

Husband and wife invite public to `Come See the Light'
2010-03-14T00:00:00Z One painter + one poet = one contemporary exhibitBY TIM SHELLBERG - Times Correspondent nwitimes.com
March 14, 2010 12:00 am  • 

For Stephen and Denise Robinson, the marriage of his paintings with her poetry are enlightening collaborations.

For Stephen and Denise Robinson, the marriage of his paintings with her poetry are enlightening collaborations.

"If you look at the painting and then look at the poetry, what you're doing is creating a third dimension," Hammond artist Stephen Robinson said. "And it's that third dimension that we're hoping to get across to the viewer."

When the two joined creative forces, "the work itself becomes very forceful," poet-wife Denise added.  "We're very pleased with the results."

The Robinsons are making their public art region debut in "Come See the Light," a collection of 20 paintings and poems on display through March 31 at the main branch of the Hammond Public Library. Admission is free.

Stephen, 58, was born in England and spent more than four decades in Australia. He made his way to the States in 2007 and married the Lansing-bred Denise, 46, later that year.

Stephen studied art at the University of Newcastle, earning the Australian equivalent of a master's degree, and Denise has penned poetry, with a preference towards haiku works, for decades.

The couple approached the Hammond library about exhibiting their collaborations last year. Denise was inspired first, writing 20 largely Christian and spiritual-based poems. Three months later, Stephen began a series of classical-style paintings. Recurring images include lighthouses and seascapes.

Ironically, the pair worked in separate studios and didn't discuss the project until Stephen was satisfied with his artworks.  Then they realized each had pursued the subject of light, divine and natural, hence the title of their show.

"Isn't that odd?" Stephen said. "Hard to believe, but it's the absolute truth."

To Denise, haiku, a form of Japanese poetry that combines form, content and meaning, is a perfect fit for her mate's realistic paintings.

"I love that you have to get your point across in that 17-syllable format," she said. "There's no room for a lot of nonsense. You have to say what you need to say and there's not a lot of space to be wordy or excessive. What just needs to be said, gets said, and I think that makes it very powerful."  

"To have two people come together with two art forms like this is wonderful," Stephen added.

 

IFYOUGO

WHAT: "Come See the Light: Works by Stephen Robinson and Denise Robinson" through March 31

WHERE: Hammond Public Library, 564 State St., Hammond

Hours: 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Thursday and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Friday and Saturday

COST: Free

FYI: (219) 931-5100

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