Thursday, March 14, 2013

Robert Shore: "When I approach a painting or an illustration, I am concerned with the graphic drama of the interplay of shape, form, and color."

Robert Shore was born in 1924 in New York City. He studied at the Cranbrook Academy (under Zoltan Sepeshy and Bill McVey)and the Art Students League.


By the time these pieces above and below were published in Redbook magazine in 1961, Shore was himself a teacher; first at Cooper Union and then at New York's School of Visual Arts. His work had been exhibited at the Detroit Institute of Fine Arts, the National Academy, and the Smithsonian Institution. In 1967 he was awarded a gold medal by the Society of Illustrators.


Working in Realism was obviously not a a problem for Shore (as demonstrated above) but he seems to have been much more interested in exploring other approaches. "Some of today's best illustration is done by artists who never studied to be illustrators at all," said Shore. "But instead were trained in related fields of painting, printmaking and sculpture."


"Their natural approach, stimulated by contact with these fields, has made them admirably equipped to meet the exacting graphic demands of industry."

Robert Shore embraced that idea of a broad artistic background: he created sculptures and ceramics, taking first prize for sculpture in the 1954 Young American Craftsmen Show.

Regarding the execution of this woodcut, which he carved into a 3-foot-long plank, Shore said, "I love the physical act of cutting into a soft wood. It brings together the the most exciting qualities of sculpture and the graphic arts. Like all techniques that require real physical participation, it is extremely satisfying."


"My prime motivation for a pictorial idea may be something I have seen or felt or simply stumbled upon," said Shore. "When I approach a painting or an illustration, I am concerned with the graphic drama of the interplay of shape, form, and color."


"Very often the subject matter merely acts as a catalyst which begins the action of design."


"I don't mean by this that I am not interested in subject matter. But I'm interested in it only insofar as it contributes to the possibilities of pictorial drama."


* Continued tomorrow

1 comment:

  1. Definitely a picture-maker in the truest sense. Often, simply drawing representationally is not always the solution to a graphic problem.

    I was especially intrigued by Shore talking about printmaking. I picked linocutting maybe a month ago and the possibilities of using it for my art are exciting.

    Thanks, Leif.