Shana Robbins statement

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Artist Statement

So much good has come to my life from being an artist. This very special path has offered me many opportunities to grow throughout the decades, and I believe this lived experience is reflected in my current work. The work registers a sensibility, an aesthetic, a mode of perceiving and living. It compares to a reflective silence, one that can lend insight to a serendipitous moment, as we find in the very performative art of the Zen Tea Ceremony.

The mediums I use: textiles, acrylics, pencils, crystals, plants, powders and so on, possess an ephemeral materiality and, like magical messenger molecules, they reveal some of the spaces I have shared with others in my travels throughout the world.

Even though I can include myself in the paintings, my artistic view is not necessarily human-centric.  When my work succeeds, it is due to a realization that who we are as sentient beings is only possible because of an exquisite, interdependence of life at all scales of what we call the Real. This open involvement with life can be vibrant, tender, magical, and terribly mysterious.  My work is a pursuit of such qualities, even when sorrow and unknowability can fill our days.

Therefore, in my journeys with teachers, friends, curanderas, shamanistas, and my own downloads, I have found a people, a tribe, a collective. This collective is still in pursuit of the beauty in life and stands to keep lineages and the art they produce alive. On their behalf, I offer you this aspiration from the Pollen Path (Diné). I am attracted to its many resonances with the theme of interdependence.  When a field is covered with pollen, it’s akin to a golden sky; it connects us to flowers, bees, rain, sun, and powerful cycles of fertility and renewal.  At times, you see the footprints of those who were there before you, if the pollen was left unchanged. You can make out various dances too, cha cha’s, tangos, butoh, the bankhead bounce—but sometimes, the wind sweeps the pollen away, reminiscent of Plato’s image of time as a lion walking in the desert erasing its tracks with its swinging tail.

The aspiration goes like this:
Beauty before me. Beauty behind me.
Beauty above me.  Beauty below me.
Beauty all around me.
Beauty inside of me.
May I live this life in Beauty and may I die in Beauty.