Robert Rae


Snare Drum
ink 47x66cm
Porsche 930
ink 50x60cm
ink 45x52cm
click on artwork to see a larger version

About Robert Rae

Commonplace or mundane objects and actions have always been of interest to me. As an

artist, I’ve been inspired by the artwork of artist Bill Viola to create video projects that include

milk glugging in slow motion from an overturned jug, bleeping electric tooth brushes, humming

fish tanks, and blurry kitchen lights. 

Similarly, William Eggleston’s photographs, apparently random snapshots of Memphis and Mississippi, are infused with clarity and elegance.

Inherent within the mundane is the presumption of an object free from pretence or affectation, and with the act of looking closely at a thing that is usually overlooked, something is fundamentally altered. The thing is removed from its prosaic habitat, and the mundane takes on alien, surreal qualities.

Endowing the most mundane of raw materials with more dramatic possibilities could be seen

to be treating ordinarily overlooked subjects with more respect. 

Or perhaps the idea demonstrated is that drawing is drawing, and the subject matter assumes a more subordinate role.

Whatever the case, the subjects I have chosen to explore have been selected for their behaviour with light and shade, rather than their original, utilitarian purpose. 

Massaging the values of luminosity by way of the uncompromising medium of black ink-on-paper is a challenge. Re-purposing a typically technical medium to a more subtle, ethereal discipline mirrors the treatment of the subjects: Imbuing the prosaic with an uncharacteristic aesthetic value.

Robert comes from Melbourne, Australia, where he grew up being influenced and inspired by a family involved with mechanical things, the craft of photography and the art world. The adoption of drafting tools in no small way likely comes from his late architect father.

Somehow, after formal studies in photography, a career in computers and I.T. ensued, all the while dabbling in painting, photography and drawing. 

The current field of endeavour which produced these works arose from smaller, hesitant sketches of commonly found objects. 





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These were gradually developed and expanded upon, using a kind of scribbling technique which resembles television static when viewed close-up.

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