Saturday I ventured from Green Hill to see the exhibit It Starts Here at the Wickford Art Association in Wickford, RI [Jan 11th – Feb 3rd show ]. A diversity of watercolor and oil paintings of many scenes and styles were on display, along with charcoal sketches, pastels and photography from Wickford’s instructors and their students. Seeing artwork is always inspirational for me, but the highlight of the afternoon was getting to meet and know award winning pastel artist Jane E. Robbins.
From Academia to the Art World
Pablo Picasso once said …”Every child is an artist. The problem is how to remain an artist once we grow up.” Jane’s experience has been just the opposite. Up until 2016, Jane was a full time professor of management and entrepreneurship, and part time management consultant [ … Jane still teaches business strategy to undergraduates at URI and MBA students at Roger Williams ]
The catalyst for Jane’s transition from full time professor to all-in Rhode Island artist began when she enrolled in a pastel art class. There she discovered a passion for pastels, and credits them for their purity of color. Jane favors pastels for their immediate and satisfying way of capturing the energy and emotion of everyday life. It’s remarkable to visit Jane’s website and see her body of artwork and awards; she’s accomplished so much as an artist in a few short years.
Jane’s E Robbins Pastel Artwork Collections
Jane has a wide range of interests that are reflected in her diverse collections, from Waves and Beaches, to Rhode Island Plein Air Landscapes, to her Kitchen, Restaurant and Bar Collection. View her collections, and you’ll delight in seeing scenes from both her home kitchen [which features her vintage gold toned KitchenAid mixer], and scenes from professional kitchens at local hot spots like Matunuck Oyster Bar and Fish Restaurant in Jamestown, RI.
Painting kitchens and chefs is something I love to do because these scenes carry with them a sense of energy and action. I admire and respect those who feed me, and try to capture their focus and intensity in my paintings. These are men and women who work hard to please total strangers like you and me. Restaurants are microcosms of taste, culture, and place, making us all feel comfortable, welcome and content.
Jane’s Food & Kitchen Collection
Jane and I gushed over our love of cooking and baking. In her website bio Jane asks, “Is there anything more beautiful than an egg?” Certainly not (!) [hanging in my Green Hill kitchen are egg prints I collected at the Culinary Institute of America.] Jane, it turns out, studied the culinary arts, earning her professional chef diploma from the Cambridge School of Culinary Arts. Jane elevates the ordinary, and draws inspiration from her personal spaces. She has great affection for simple things, like the ingredients on her counter; apples awaiting their transformation into a pie, juicy Karla’s Peaches from Young Family Farm in Little Compton, a sac of white lily self-rising flour pulled from the cupboard for biscuit making, or Little Rhody Natural Eggs awaiting deployment for a mile high meringue.
Still More Collections from Jane E Robbins
Jane has more collections beyond those of food and hospitality. Dive deep into her portfolio and you’ll gleefully discover, just like a jingle shell on the beach, a rich portfolio of work featuring: Rhode Island & New England, Waves & Beaches, and Plein Air Landscapes & Seascapes.
In the painting below Jane captures what one might see when strolling along Narragansett’s Sea Wall that stretches 3.5 miles long. My experience of walking this promenade matches perfectly what Jane has depicted here; a colorful hidden ocean underworld of rocks, purpleness & cappuccino-like foaminess.
Follow Jane E Robbins
Jane E Robbin’s artwork has a way of connecting with people in an immediate and emotive way; when she’s painting plein air at local South County beaches, passersby will purchase her pieces right from the easel. If you’re interested in following Jane’s work, and knowing about her upcoming shows, join me in following her in one or all of these 3 easy ways:
- Sign up for Jane E Robbin’s newsletter on the home page of her website.
- Follow Jane E Robbins Art on Instagram where you can see her latest creations.
- Like Jane E Robbins on Facebook and get details on her upcoming shows.