Cabrillo Gallery

Jonathan Parker & Stephanie Robison: Dialogues

January 30 - March 3, 2023

Jonathan Parker and Stephanie Robison share a common visual language, yet each speaks in their own distinctive dialect. These two artists construct their abstract artworks from uncannily related shapes and compositional structures, though Parker arranges them on the flat plane of a canvas, and Robison forms them in three-dimensional space.

In a similar way to automatic writing, Parker’s “sewn paintings” are composed intuitively. Trusting his subconscious impulses and guided by the aesthetic lexicon he has honed over time, Jonathan first deconstructs painted canvas or colored fabrics into shapes, using his own invented vocabulary of forms. He then arranges the shaped elements and sews them together on a canvas. The finished works have raw roughness around the edges, yet each coalesces into a singular, refined aesthetic statement.

Almost as if creating dialectical arguments through materials, Stephanie Robison enjoys playing with oppositional relationships. She shapes stone in a manner that infers an illusory softness, contradicting the unyielding hardness of the material. And in carving marble and similar materials on a very intimate scale, Robison subverts the classical monumentality of stone sculpture. In her recent works, Stephanie juxtaposes the cool gravity of her carved stone forms with the lyrical lightness and warmth of felted wool. In her hands, these incongruous materials work together in harmony, resolving their differences.

When placed in proximity, Jonathan and Stephanie’s works start up stimulating, playful conversations, riffing off one another in delightful aesthetic dialogues that echo and reflect each other’s kindred visual vocabularies.

Images in header: Jonathan Parker, SC #330, acrylic on canvas, sewn. Stephanie Robison, Split, marble, wool

Other images: Jonathan Parker, SC #231, acrylic on canvas, sewn. Stephanie Robison, Pandemic, marble wool

Jonathan Parker + Stephanie Robison: Dialogues exhibition images