As with folklore, science fiction, autobiography, and concepts related to time, time travel, and cinema, Robert interrogates and mines the oral, challenging a static understanding of history. Collective and private experiences roam, and the stuff of culture, our horizon, acts as a starting point for thinking and questioning. In speaking to and addressing the present, history and memory is likened to the push and pull of sampling and song, and it forms into something new. As photography is to surveillance and policing is to the archive, as music is to both listen and dance, and as dance is tonight, a ritual of sunrise and sunset, the martial arts and vice versa, Robert “both breaks down, builds on, builds up, interprets, and reinterprets” painting.
Through accumulation, stacking, shifts in perspective and scale, rhythm and repetition, the artist experiments with colour, line, and grids, arriving at a mosaic-like approach that negotiates abstraction, the lyrical alongside the concrete. The artist describes his method, “In questioning how an image comes into the world and into being, I want to own up and admit at any point a painting, an image can change direction and isn’t fixed.”
Robert prefers not to focus on the process behind his work: “The act of taking apart the production distracts and is not the conversation for me, but there is a desire to have the viewer take in the whole picture. Although a painting may raise questions, it isn’t always necessary to rush and quickly snuff it out, but it may instead call the viewer to pause and ponder. In the calling for wonder and myth today, it is not necessarily important to reveal your cards so quickly.”
Andy Robert (b. 1984, Les Cayes, Haiti) lives and works in Brooklyn, NY.Recent solo exhibitions include Hannah Hoffman Gallery, Los Angeles. Robert has been included in significant group exhibitions at The Museum ofContemporary Art Chicago; Hammer Museum, Los Angeles; Crystal Bridges Museum of American Art, Bentonville, AR; and The Studio Museum in Harlem. His work is included in the collections of The Museum of Modern Art, New York; TheBlanton Museum of Art, Austin, TX; The Astrup Fearnley Museum of Modern Art,Oslo, Norway; The University of Chicago Booth School of Business; HammerMuseum, Los Angeles; and The Studio Museum in Harlem. This year, the artist will participate in the Carnegie International at the Carnegie Museum of Art in Pittsburgh, PA opening on 24 September 2022.