Jenny Robinson | Fragile Symmetry

Jenny Robinson | Fragile Symmetry

Jenny Robinson | Fragile Symmetry will be on exhibition September 2 - October 29, 2022. Join us for an opening reception September 1st from 6-8pm.

Exhibition Statement

Jenny Robinson’s structures involve close, in-person study of real structures and her re-imagination and reinterpretation of them. Her work is rooted in and emerges from drawing on site. Every project begins with observational drawings and photographs which are revisited in the studio where they are re-drawn, re-examined, and re-organized until the forms take on a life of their own. Her choice of paper is also central to the work. Thin, delicate Japanese paper is often used at a monumental scale, revealing its strength. The dichotomy between the fragility and strength of these specific Japanese papers directly references concerns for the often overlooked but increasingly obvious fragility of our built environments.

“I am interested in the moment when an image points us towards a world that we recognize, firmly rooted in the here and now, but not quite real, giving us a history of the present as a dream-like architecture built from the tessellations of recurrent memories and fragile materials.”

Featured in this exhibition are two new series, No Obvious Monuments and Rotondo. Both began as drawings made by Robinson in Europe from 2018-2020. These drawings were revisited in her studio during the Covid lockdown of 2020. The resulting works represent a departure from her usual large-scale style as a reflection of the unusual circumstances of 2020 when she was unable to access her typical resources and space. The Rotondo series is a celebration of the beauty of architectural forms and symmetry of Europe, from 19th century Romanticism to the brutalism of Eastern Europe. The No Obvious Monuments series is a variety of abstractions created from the hidden forms within our urban surroundings. She explored the small-scale with monotype treatment of the paper so that while the twenty primary forms are repeated between portfolios, each piece is largely unique.

This exhibition also includes The Glasshouse, a new monumental work. A return to her preferred size, Robinson explores scale and layering to consider both the isolating experience of the pandemic and alarm of the climate crisis. The transparent glasshouse addresses ideas of isolation, fragility, protection, and renewal. 

“As if seen through the fogged window of a conservatory, two large, translucent sheets of Gampi paper are layered, one over the other, exploring ideas of how manmade structures and the natural world can coexist. One layer represents the organic shapes of endangered plant species, the other represents the delicate architecture designed to protect life in places where that life cannot survive.”