January 2012: Robert Tomlinson & Olinka Broadfoot

Robert Tomlinson has been creating colorful mixed-media works on paper for over 25 years. He has a deep affection for the materials he uses: oil stick, pastel, chalk and pencil on black arches paper. Tomlinson notes that he usually works thematically, which allows him to develop an initial idea or inspiration into a single body of work with recognizable components. All of the works in this exhibit are new. The show title, “Ballades,” honors the specific musical compositions by Brahms, as it was the only music listened to in the studio while the work was being made. Tomlinson believes that the pieces completed in this series reveal the ethereal and darkly joyful aspects that are experienced in Brahms’s haunting solo piano pieces.

Olinka Broadfoot is a sculpture working in clay and brick. She travels to the Czech Republic to a brick factory and is allowed to work there with their product. Brick clay is different, the process of drying and firing is much faster. “I like the fact that working with this particular material is a challenge and I now understand what the material will do. After 14 years of working with raw bricks I learned to respect the fact that a brick wants to be a brick, but I was able to push this medium within its own parameters to a great extent. Because many sorts of bricks are manufactured with different additives in the clay, I had to treat each type of brick differently. That is why some work is “hammered”, some carved, etc.” The pieces are shaped after manufacture but b”efore they are fired, then dried, fired, reassembled and then finished. “I work in a wide range of mediums, reflecting the language of whatever medium happens to be on hand. I enjoy the challenge. One medium releases the energy for the other..”.Olinka will also be showing her clay sculptures as well.