Robert Drucker, Lovers in Paradise II,
acrylic on canvas
Seattle painter Robert Drucker, who graduated Magna Cum Laude as a science major from the University of California, Berkeley, is (via Pratt Fine Arts Center) among the growing number of artists with exhaustive training in totally different disciplines who have migrated into the visual arts in search of personal expression.
Since the ideal educational path to becoming a painter remains controversial, together with the stylistic twists and turns of 20th Century art, it is also possible that the development of a colour sense and the acquisition of fluid and deft paint-handling, as demonstrated in this exhibition, may indeed come from diverse sources.
Drucker's objectives, according to his Artist's Statement, are the abstracted pursuit of colour and beauty - both of which are highly subjective, and ultimately more demanding than, say, draftsmanship, design or ulterior didactic programs.
Working (as he says) from nature, life, his surroundings and history, what is interesting is his total removal from the regionalist underpinnings so long pre-eminent in Northwest art. There is less moody, "tubed up fog," [Louis Bunce] and more sun-generated yellows, greens and blues in which discrete figurative implications are kept at small, presumably devotional scale in relation to (what appears to him to be) an awesome cosmos. Drucker's paintings are light-filled and life-affirming. His act of painting is touchingly mantric in the midst of what he sees as a nihilistic world. Lighting a candle versus cursing the dark.
© Ted Lindberg