egg tempera & oil on canvas
ROBERT YOUNG'S PAINTINGS combine a reconstructive process with photo-based imagery, classical appropriations, narrative "stagings", and stylized graphic areas.
His work is not directly about the resolution of spatial problems. With a Sienese lighting and projecting a strong domestic quality, Young's paintings show his fascination with interior and exterior surface textures - plaster, wood, wall paint, mottled glass, or semi-transparent and coarsely-woven fabrics. Decorative symbolic forms, such as Art Deco motifs, are used as floating design elements or as windowpane, carpet and wallpaper designs. His crudely realistic figures have a separate, alien quality about them that is reminiscent of stern and frontally-posed early photographic portraits.
At the same time, there are no unused sections of his imagery. Young closely investigates each two-dimensional plane for its picture potential. He delineates each area with a sophisticated tightness, and leaves the viewer to discriminate the meaning of the whole.
© Mia Johnson