Our Time in New Mexico

Landscape Series by Robert Stembridge and Catherine Lynch

This series of paintings is a change in direction from the industrial landscapes that Robert has been doing. There is a turn away from the sculptural man-made forms of industry and towards a study of natural beauty. However the relationship of abstraction to reality is still being explored. The progression is from ‘#OK47’ to ‘The Red Mesa’. A grid was used to call attention to the fact that a painting is an interlocking collection of proportioned shapes: Depth, forms, etc. are all illusions. As the realistic landscape interacts with the under painting, the progression is towards an integration of the two forms of art. In the end, the goal is for the landscape to become just another element of the abstract painting. This is as opposed to the earlier pieces in which the landscape painting is placed ‘on top of’ the abstract painting.

The landscapes were painted from a montage photo of separate sky and ground. This allows for a ‘rehearsed composition’ and it also means that the scene you see never existed in reality. The photos were shot out of a car window with a cheap, disposable camera – mostly from I-40 between Albuquerque and Grants, NM